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BITE user comments - HTM69

Comments by HTM69

The Junction Tavern, Kentish Town

Situated opposite Kentish Town tube station, The Junction Tavern is an adequate, purpose-serving hostelry geared towards those who wander in after a train journey and those looking for a pre-HMV Forum sup-or-two. Aside from its useful qualities just emphasised, I see little reason to return again.

A rather anonymous exterior Ė well, it was dark outside Ė leads into a dimly lit, almost open-plan bar area which is Spartan in set-up and appearance. There was very little to attract my wandering eye, other that the tables and chairs and giant Christmas tree sat in one corner. The pub, as expected, was bustling during my stay, with dinning couples and small groups scattered all around. Background music was sedate and almost unnoticeable. Choice at the bar is predictably mainstream, though two hand-pumps were spotted to supplement the run-of-the-mill keg beers: Abbott Ale and a seasonal offering. I tried neither and instead, opted for an expensive, though be it, refreshing, pint of Guinness Extra Cold. It was poured expertly by the polite and fantastically buxom and beautiful barmaid. So, to conclude: an OK meeting spot and not a lot else Ė well, other than the hotties behind the bar, of course.

21 Dec 2009 15:17

The Brass Monkey, Victoria

In its previous guise as The Lord Burleigh, The Brass Monkey was a rough-and-ready locals-style establishment, which was of little interest to the passer by. Today, the approach is slightly different Ė and although perhaps not to everyoneís taste Ė is more appealing now than before. The unassuming, green-painted facade leads into dimly-lit bar area with laminate flooring and very little to engage the wandering eye. Although unobtrusive, the background music was stereotypically bland and added nothing to the experience. Towards the rear of the pub is a raised area where groups can lounge on the two leather sofas. The toilets are situated up the rickety staircase. My visit was on a recent weekday afternoon, so as you would expect, the clientele was seemingly made up of the local worker population. One surprise and genuine positive is the inclusion of two hand-pumps, saddled beside the selection of keg offerings: Adnamís Bitter and Timothy Taylorís, Landlord. The latter-mentioned was served in fine fettle Ė admittedly, another surprise Ė and priced at a reasonable £3.00. The two members of staff encountered Ė one of them an Aussie Ė were approachable and forthcoming in their service. To conclude: not an establishment a can envisage frequent visits too, but nevertheless, a bar with a few positives to counterbalance the inevitable negatives that accompany 21st century modern-style bars. .

23 Nov 2009 12:50

The King George V, Brompton

A village of sorts, the area of Brompton is situated within the town of Gillingham and finds itself in close proximity to both the Historic Dockyard and the nearby Royal Engineerís Barracks. In the distant past, the area was awash with pubs, but today, it is only home to a few Ė and one of those is currently boarded up. The most attractive and enticing of those that remain is here, The King George V. A corner-location hostelry, it sits in fine splendour amongst the picturesque Georgian-era town houses, which would have once been home to the officers of the Engineers regiment. Originally called The Prince of Orange in the 1700ís, the establishment later change its name to The King Of Prussia, before Ė rather sensibly Ė opting to the change the name to The King George V during the outbreak of the Great War.

History lessons aside, what you have here, is a quaint, delightful, Cask Marquee accredited ale house, which specials in quality draught beer, spirits and bottled Belgium lagers. The interior is smart and with a resonating warmth throughout. Naturally, a naval theme prevails, with plenty of nautical objects and bric-a-brac adoring the walls. As you would expect with a small pub, seating is limited, but have never failed to grab a pew on my several visits of late. Towards the back of the pub, is a basic, yet accommodating beer patio, which plays host to the beer festivals that crop up from time to time. Background music is aired at a gentle, unobtrusive volume and thankfully does not detract from the relative calm of the atmosphere. The customer-base is generally made up of well-behaved groups, couples and military officer-types Ė the more raucous and boisterous Cannon (next door) is where you are more likely to find the squaddies. On the ale front, there are four hand-pumps, with Adnams Bitter as the regular, supplemented at all times by a mild and two further guests: they are well-kept and prices are reasonable Ė also, every pint sampled thus far, has been poured into a special George V etched glass: a very nice touch, indeed. Those encountered behind the bar have been polite and amiable. To conclude: The George V is a wonderful example of how one can maintain and preserve a historic old pub. I highly recommend a visit post-haste.

7 Nov 2009 17:10

The Barley Mow, Westminster

Situated along Horseferry Road and sufficiently away from the bustle of Victoria Street and the endless hoard of tourists that buzz around the various Westminster and Whitehall attracts, is an accommodating hostelry going by the name of The Barley Mow. Complete with hanging baskets and benches, the pubs facade is one of invite and promise Ė and indeed, the smart, modern and altogether appealing interior shows merit, also. A raised area to the left as you enter plays host to a large plasma television and a couple of leather sofas. Further on is another screen for those sporting events and another raised area Ė seemingly more geared towards those wishing to dine: the menu displays the usual gastro fare with main meals starting at around £7.00. Black and white prints are dotted around, depicting the locality in days gone by. Background music has been aired during both of my recent stays and pleasingly, at a delicate, appropriate volume. Clientele seemingly consist of the odd local and nearby office-types. Choice at the bar is relatively extensive, with six hand-pumps being in operation alongside the regular, commonplace keg offerings: London Pride, Spitfire, Sussex Best, Doom Bar, Hogs Back TEA, and Deuchars IPA Ė the latter being priced at £3.00 and served in fine fettle. The bar personnel encountered have been diligent and well mannered in their service. To conclude: whist being far from outstanding, I found here to be a pleasant surprise. A relaxed ambience and well-conditioned ales will always result in a thumbs-up from this reviewer!

1 Nov 2009 13:44

The White Horse and Bower, Westminster

An attractive faÁade aside, The White Horse and Bower is a plain and rather non-descript Shepherd Neame house, though here at least offers its patrons somewhere to settle for a couple of well-conditioned pints, if not a lot else. The carpeted interior is one large knocked through room, with very little to catch ones attention: a few black-and-white prints, jugs, urns and a large, well-positioned plasma television Ė showing Sky News during my recent stay. The toilets are situated in the basement and basic, no-thrills pub fare is available for those wishing for a bite. Clientele present on the occasion of my visit seemingly consisted of local office-types and in fact, being situated slightly away from the main Westminster and Whitehall attractions, few tourists. Choice at the bar was a reasonable as could be expected, with a decent array of the brewerís ales on offer: Masterbrew, Spitfire, the autumn seasonal, Late Red and a further fourth pump, with its clip sadly reversed Ė usually Canterbury Jack, by the looks of things. The bar personnel were attentive and hardworking and seemingly have a good relationship with their thirsty regulars. To conclude: whilst here is evidently a pub which pleases its core custom, it is too lacking within to warrant much more than an average rating. Top-marks for the well conditioned ales, but a thumbs-down for the lack of interesting features within.

4 Oct 2009 15:39

The Tigers Head, Bromley

A roadside pub of little note, The Tigers Head has undergone a refurbishment since my last visit a couple of years back. Very little has changed interior-wise, with perhaps, a general smartening-up being the only real change. The main hub of the bar is quite spacious with very little to really catch ones attention. Old town prints go a little way to adding a touch of character, but otherwise, itís just a couple of pool tables and plasma televisions which catch the eye. Background music was aired at a reasonable volume - even if this reviewer didnít quite appreciate the Arctic Monkeyís My Propeller and the German Bundesliga football being aired simultaneously. Seating is plentiful, though the traditionalists may bulk at the sight of cube-style seating and the oh-so-popular high stools. Choice at the bar is limited, with just the regular keg selections and three redundant hand pumps. My pint of Guinness was served in poor condition and, at £3.15, is a little a little pricey. The barmaid on duty was pleasant, however. To conclude: a Bromley hostelry with scope for improvement, though as things stand, not a place to go out of your way to visit.

4 Oct 2009 15:09

Rifleman, Chatham

This pub has closed and is now a convenience store of some description.

28 Sep 2009 10:38

The Will Adams, Gillingham

Formerly The Anglo Saxon Ė as is shown etched on the window by the Saloon Bar entrance Ė The Will Adams is a Gillingham hostelry with a reputation for serving well-conditioned ales in a secure and friendly atmosphere. Being a local resident and someone always eager to try new haunts, I looked forward to my most recent of evening visits. The first signs are not entirely positive, with a not-too-inviting, faÁade and within, the interior is tired, dated, run-down and in serious need of sprucing up. The walls are painted to depict a kind of old wooden house, but the effect unfortunately comes off as rather amateurish and almost child-like. It all seems rather tacky. To the right of the bar area is a large mural depicting the seafaring adventures of the pubs namesake. Further on is a darts board Ė pleasingly in use Ė and a small mounted television Ė showing the football during my stay. Although not busy, the clientele within seemed a well behaved friendly group and evidently enjoyed engaging in banter with the Chris Moyleís look-a-like landlord. Five hand-pumps are on display at the bar, though only two were in use: Hop Backs Summer Lightning and Meantime London Pale Ale. The former was served in very good condition and shows that the CAMRA recognition is deserving Ė local pub-of-the-year 2006. It was also pleasing to note copies of the local branches magazine by the bar Ė Medway Beer Belly. To conclude: despite the praise received on the beer front, this reviewer personally found the surroundings a little too uncomfortable and cold, for here to ever become a regular stop-off. If they could make the interior more homely and address the slightly hollow atmosphere, then The Will Adams could justifiably be considered a pub of genuine merit.

18 Sep 2009 16:48

The Colonies, Westminster

Yikes! Ė I meant The Colonies!

1 Sep 2009 07:28

The Colonies, Westminster

Situated away from the bustle of Victoria Street and the modernized Cardinal Walk development is a rather non-descript, though be it, decent enough, hostelry called The Colonials: a place I occasionally frequent due to its proximity to my place of work, though not somewhere I could envisage visits to for any other reason. An attractive enough facade leads into a rather plain, formulaic, faux traditional-style interior, with very little to really catch ones attention. The approach and setup is somewhat basic, with wooden tables and chairs in the main bar, leading onto a carpeted raised area with further seating facilities and an old world map, to add a touch of character. Beyond this point is a courtyard to satisfy the smokers and alfresco drinkers Ė weather permitting, of course. Chalk boards aplenty are dotted around the main bar area, advertising the pub-grub and various drink promotions on offer. There is also a plasma television Ė switched off on my visits, thus far Ė which I presume, is used for those all important sporting occasions. Background music can be a little on the loud side and is pathetically MOR and overly poppy. Fellow clientele on my visits seem to have consisted of groups of stressed office-types Ė and in fact, few solitary drinkers. Choice at the bar is actually one of the pubs better assets. Amongst the mainstream keg offerings, four hand pumps are there to serve and please the ale lover: London Pride (£2.50) and three guest ales: my pint of Everards Sunchaser was served in prime condition Ė indeed, there are no complaints from this reviewer on the beer front, here. The bar personnel encountered, have been hardworking and efficient for the most part, though service can be impersonal, at times. To conclude: whilst I am happy to sup my post-work pint here Ė and it undoubtedly serves its core customer-base well Ė its lacks that little extra something to make it a worthwhile pit-stop for those not usually in the locality.

31 Aug 2009 23:13

The Barge, Gillingham

Not an area generally noted for quality ale houses, the Kentish town of Gillingham, does, however, throw up a few surprises. One such place often lauded, is here: The Barge. Set away from the town centre and all the troubles that can arise there, this slightly odd, though be it, quirky and charming hostelry offers the discerning local Ė and from further afield as well, of course Ė the opportunity to sample local brews and take in an array of folk and acoustic-based live acts Ė admittedly though, of varying levels of ability. The exterior is one of immediate intrigue and invite and indeed, the promise is fulfilled once within: dark, wooden, candle light, lanterns, and a very atmospheric feel and ambience. Cigarette cards, old smoking pipes, model ships and plenty of nautical-themed bric-a-brac can be spotted adorning the walls. Aside from the music Ė a sizeable stage is towards the rear of the pub Ė an active pool table and a dartboard are all on offer for entertainment. Background music is aired at a gentle volume and is seemingly, a constant stream of the more credible hits of yesteryear. To the rear of the establishment is a sheltered conservatory, complete with an old piano, table tennis (!!) and an old birdís cage. A straggly, uncared-for beer garden follows on and despite the view of the River Medway; one cannot help but feel that here could be much improved upon. It resembles a junk yard and a little TLC, could really improve what could be a champion asset to the pub. Back inside, the bar Ė as previously mentioned Ė offers a selection of locally brewed and themed ales Ė although of the five hand pumps, only three and two respectively, have been in working order during my couple of recent stays. Amongst those sampled: Wadworth Henrys Original IPA, Gravesend Shrimpers Bitter and Nelsonís Powder Monkey. All beers served have been in perfectly drinkable condition by approachable and friendly members of staff. Indeed, the landlord himself is most forthcoming and charismatic, offering cheery welcomes and goodbyes upon entry and exit. To conclude: here does deserve the plaudits and if a few niggles could be addressed Ė hello garden Ė then The Barge would surely be, the pub that every Medway establishment should aspire to.

17 Aug 2009 22:57

Adam and Eve, Westminster

Apologies for the unforgivable error Ė I meant T&J Bernard!

11 Aug 2009 06:49

Adam and Eve, Westminster

A TAJ Bernard House situated along Petty France, The Adam and Eve is somewhere this reviewer occasionally frequents on a weekday evening. A somewhat traditional Victorian-era hostelry, here is a comfortable enough establishment to settle for a couple of after-work sups whilst flipping through a copy of something a little highbrow, like, oh, The London Paper! Botched attempts at humor aside, what you have here, is a perfectly accommodating pub that suits those in groups or those such as I, who just seek a little solitude after a hard days slog. Interior is rather nondescript, though interesting original features such as the glassed booths and central pillars are still intact to add a little character. The flooring is part wood-paneling, part carpeted and to the rear of the main bar area is a smaller room Ė barely enough space to swing a cat, to be truthful Ė which, as I understand, used to be where the non-smokers could escape the fumes. Choice at the bar is reasonable with five hand-pumps on display to supplement the usual keg offerings. Ales available on my most recent visit consisted of a slightly mainstream selection of Bombardier, London Pride, Youngís Bitter and Adnams Bitter Ė the later being served in OK condition and, at £2.76, reasonably priced. The fifth pump was unfortunately redundant during my latest stay, though Deuchars IPA is sometimes offered. Background music is appropriately sedate and unobtrusive and all staff encountered have been genial in their service, helping to create a pleasant atmosphere within To conclude: I enjoy my visits here and am glad that I have found somewhere that caters for my after-work needs so efficiently.

3 Aug 2009 21:28

The Liquor Station, Wembley

Finding ourselves in the rather unremarkable setting of Wembley High St prior to an Oasis concert at the famous nearby stadium, my brother and I were faced with the rather un-envious dilemma of where to settle for a couple of pre-Gallagher brother beers. After initially attempting Ė and failing Ė to get served in the stuffy and claustrophobic local JD Wetherspoon, we decided to turn our attention to the former post office next door: The Bear.

First impressions upon entering were favorable, with seating aplenty and no great queue at the bar. However, the atmosphere took a distinct nose dive when some boozed-up baboons decided to throw poorly-aimed blows at each other each, resulting in several toppling to the floor in fits of hysterics and mock-agony. Thankfully, the rather masculine female doorman Ė sorry, doorperson Ė wrestled the presumed ringleader to the floor before escorting the lout off the premises. Finally, once the spectacle had ceased being of any interest, I and fellow patrons were now able to turn our attention to the well-stocked bar: not. Despite three hand pumps, two appeared redundant and the Bombardier clip was half-turned Ė does that mean it is on or off or half-on?? I regrettably opted for a pint of Stella Artois and a Fosters. The former was, as expected, rancid and barely drinkable. A few moments of solitude ensued after we managed to settle at a table, although the music volume soon went up and a notch and ones ears were insulted by the latest banal offerings from todayís urban and RnB elite Ė scoff. Turning my attention to the interior for a few brief moments, I am at least pleased to report that the architectural structure show some merit and there is even a slight sense of grandeur within this former public-services building. As-per-usual with so many of todayís drinking establishments, a cheapie all-day food menu is available with the now commonplace Ďcurry clubí being amongst the more palatable promotions. Back at the bar and the staff situation most definitely needs addressing: despite at least five employees manning, service was slow and morose: although here was busy, they were surely not overworked. Lagers ran out and were seemingly not readily replaced, which is a poor sign. To conclude: if I ever find myself in Wembley for a musical or sporting event in the future, than suffice to say, I think a quick detour to the local supermarket for a few bottled ales would be preferable to patronizing anywhere in the vicinity.

19 Jul 2009 14:05

The Prince of Wales, Pimlico

Despite working close by in neighbouring Victoria, until a recent weekday afternoon, the area of Pimlico had remained unexplored by this usually eager reviewer. The first pub encountered Ė and in fact, my sole stop Ė was the Cask Marquee accredited Prince Of Wales. First impressions are decent enough with a tidy looking, traditional exterior, coupled with several fully occupied benches. Sadly, within, you are confronted with a rather tatty interior with little in the way of interesting features or architecture. Seating consists of a row of stools alongside the bar and several accommodating tables towards the other end of the room. I would have felt rather bored during mu stay, if it were not for the surprisingly good array of tunes that got an airing: early-Madonna, Travelling Wilburys, Slade and Status Quo. My ears were suitably soothed at least. Clientele during my stay consisted of evident regulars and a few stray office-types The atmosphere seemed jovial enough. Disappointingly, choice at the bar was a little more restricted than expected, with only two of the six hand pumps being in operation: London Pride and TT Landlord. The latter was priced at £3.10 and served a little too warm. There were two hardworking buxom barmaids present to serve and both were smiley and pleasant during their tittle-tattle with the locals. To conclude: overall, an OK local If here could improve the ale selection and tidy up the interior, then I suppose this potential patron could swing by again.

6 Jul 2009 20:27

The Strutton Arms, Westminster

Whilst its neighbour - The Old Monk Exchange - is somewhat camouflaged and unassuming, the facade of The Strutton Arms is traditional and inviting. Famed - as previously reported - by its ĎGoon Showí comedy connections, within there is unfortunately no obvious clues to its interesting heritage. Dark, dingy and with little natural light, it sets a somber tone. Dťcor is rather tatty and basic and although this reviewer has championed such old-school boozers that snub fancy modernization, there can be little doubt that here would benefit greatly from a lick of paint and sprucing up. The interior consists of one long knocked through room, with adequate seating facilities and the odd alcove to shelter couples and the solitary drinker. There are several plasma televisions mounted - showing the expected Sky Sports News during my stay - as well as unobtrusive piped in MOR music. Clientele on my visit consisted of - presumably Ė nearby residents, market trader-types and the odd shirted office worker. A selection of the regular keg offerings are to be found at the bar, supplemented by three hand pumps: Green King IPA, Speckled Hen and the commonplace London Pride - the latter being priced at a reasonable £2.85 and served in okay condition. A standard pub-grub menu is available for those who like to munch and drink simultaneously and the serving staff were friendly and attentive enough. To conclude: an okay local-style pub, with sadly, little to really commend a specific trip too. Fine, however, for a passing pint-or-two.

21 Jun 2009 21:42

The Bear and Staff, Leicester Square

Leicester Square is a vibrant and busy place and is generally not somewhere this reviewer particularly enjoys finding themselves in. It was with some reluctance then that I headed along Bear Street to the aptly named Bear and Staff: a member of the popular Nicholsonís chain. A neat and tidy and accommodating interior is immediately evident upon entry and the setup is not dissimilar to many other traditional West End pubs. The main bar area is fairly small, though seating is adequate and to the right as you enter is raised area to accommodate small groups. Clientele is seemingly made up of after-work suits tourists and theatregoers. Choice at the bar is more than reasonable, with a decent array of ales to choose from. Amongst the more regular offerings of Green King IPA, London Pride and Timothy Taylorís Landlord (the latter two being priced at £2.60 and £2.90 respectively) are St Austellís Tribute and a number of seasonal guest beers. Up the rickety staircase and one finds themselves in the dining room where you can example traditional pub fare and there is a fairly extensive sausage menu: a board proclaims what varieties are currently on offer. Having not eaten in such a place before, I looked forward to my reasonably priced (£6.75) steak and ale pie Ė it didnít disappoint. The ambience is one of relaxation and made for a pleasant experience. Dťcor wise, upstairs is not too dissimilar to below and amongst the old-style furnishings; portraits of celebrities such as Sid James adorn the walls: indeed, The Bear and Staff plays heavily on the theatrical heritage of the area, with old prints of Charlie Chaplin being on display by the stairwell. A small bar with a more limited selection serves those dinning. Background music was pleasing unobtrusive in all areas and the staff encountered were hardworking and graceful in their service. To conclude: here is a quite excellent hostelry and despite the pitfalls of the locality, triumphs over many of its near neighbours.

16 Jun 2009 18:34

The Tap 'n' Tin, Chatham

The doormen at the Tap Ďní Tin are certainly an indecisive and unsure bunch. Over the course of the past year-or-so, these black-clad burly heavies have gone through more policy changes than one cares to remember. At one time, expect to be quizzed on your previous whereabouts on the given night, on another, expect them to enquire about your employment history - you couldnít make it up! Now, they are asking those - who have been known patrons for eight years - for identification.

You would think that a supposed successful establishment such as here would extend their savvy know-how to the entrance staff and perhaps install some permanent rules and regulations: I wonít be holding my breath.

7 Jun 2009 13:42

The The Old Monk Exchange, Westminster

Situated along Strutton Ground and just off Victoria Street, is a tucked away and rather elusive bar called The Old Monk Exchange. Having walked past a couple of times of late, I decided to finally pay a visit on a recent weekday afternoon. Down the stairs and beyond the unassuming foyer and one will find themselves in bar with about as much feel as a nuclear bunker: quite large and sprawling - and yet, one almost senses instant claustrophobia. There is seating aplenty, though the layout is more suited to larger groups and although there are a few secluded spots, even they are not the most private of areas to sup your given beverage in. There is a well-positioned plasma television for those all important sporting occasions - showing Sky News on silent during my stay - and although background music can be a plus, it was a little overly loud and echoed awkwardly where I was sat. Fellow clientele consisted of groups of nearby office workers: there were seemingly few tourists or indeed, solitary drinkers such as I. At the bar, it was pleasing to see a number of working hand pumps displaying a variety of different ales. I opted for a pint of Green Kingís ĎFresh Golden Beerí, which although drinkable, was a little too chilled for my liking. Also worth noting, is the almost epic variety of bottled wines on display behind the bar - winoís paradise! Prices were average and fair for the area. Service was prompt and staff friendly. To conclude: although I would pay another visit here, I would certainly choose to accompany someone in future as this bar is not geared towards those going solo Ė unless perhaps, if you time visit accordingly.

1 Jun 2009 23:37

The Good Intent, Rochester

Tucked away off the main drag in a tidy estate, is a pub called The Good Intent. Having read the many glowing reports for this supposed hidden gem, I looked forward to my recent evening visit. The exterior is rather anonymous and slightly off-putting: tatty, knackered and unassuming. The music blaring - Prodigy - and the yells of the lads by the pool table, hardly elevated my expectations. Within, you are confronted with a rough and ready locals pub, with all the airs and graces of a run-down, run-of-the-mill working men's club. Directly in front as you enter is a pool table, and a large pull-down projection screen - showing a triumphant Manchester United on Sky Sports. Bare floorboards and nicotine-stained walls were easily observed along with basic, functional furnishings. A few black and white photos of the pub, a dartboard and an old clock being amongst he objects that adorn the walls. The clientele on my visit consisted of Stella-guzzling lads and a few giggling girlies perched on bar-side stools. Along with the aforementioned Prodigy, other music aired included a bizarre - though be it, eclectic - mix of drum 'n bass. Tom Jones, Coldplay and Sting - 'An Englishman In New York' On the beer front, the usual kegs were supplemented by an array of real ales - my pint of Westerham British Bulldog was tasty and served in tip-top condition: indeed, if there were one reason to visit here, it would be for the beers. The lady behind the bar was smiley and the landlord, amusing. To conclude: The Good Intent is not a pub I can envisage frequent visits too. The clientele and shoddy drinking surroundings render the place a little too uncomfortable for this reviewer. However, if you are a little more broad minded and enjoy sampling an interesting selection of well conditioned ales, then pay a visit.

20 May 2009 10:38

The Feathers, St James's

The Feathers is a Nicholsonís establishment and is situated just opposite St James Park tube station. I have paid several visits of late and have left satisfied on each occasion. A large, rambling and spacious interior is immediately evident upon entry, although despite the size, seating is somewhat limited in the main hub of the bar. Towards the back, however, there are enough tables to satisfy: although, they are perhaps best suited to larger groups, than the solitary drinker Ė admittedly, I usually prop myself up against one of the large pillars! Dinning facilities are available upstairs, though the opportunity for exploration has yet to be taken up. Background music is sometimes aired, though is gladly unobtrusive. Naturally, you should expect your fellow patrons to consist of nearby office workers, tourists and the odd stray. As per usual with the chain, there is a decent array of ale options. As well as guests Ė Caledonian Raspberry Fool was on good form Ė there are several of the usual suspects: Landlord, London Pride and Black Sheep Ė with prices being reasonable, also. The level of service has been satisfactory, with staff proving to be efficient, polite and attentive. On the all-important measurement front, am pleased to report that I have received a full pint each time Ė no backhand tricks here! To conclude: a satisfactory pub, with a definite sense of grandeur within. I would certainly recommend here for a few post-work sups, although perhaps, not an all-nighter.

11 May 2009 11:07

The Theodore Bullfrog, Charing Cross

Hidden away somewhat round the corner from Embankment tube station is the rather uninspiring Theodore Bullfrog. Knowing the bar was in the vicinity, I am a little surprised it has taken so long to finally pay a visit, but nevertheless, this past Friday I ensured that changed. A dull, uninteresting and incredibly unspectacular frontage leads into a split-level, bare-floored bar, with very little of interest to engage the wandering eye. Here really is lacking on the decorative front. There was, as expected, music, though be it, of a middle-of-the-road anonymous nature. Within, a chalk board proclaims that Wednesday is ĎQuiz Nightí and - for those interested - starts at 7pm. Fellow clientele on my early-evening visit consisted of nearby office suits and secretarial dolly-bird types Ė the atmosphere was slightly raucous. There are in fact, two bar areas. One larger bar displaying a half-decent array of continental lagers - Budweiser Budvar and San Miguel amongst those spotted - and another, with a set of hand pumps. Disappointingly, the choice was a little mainstream: Bombardier, Spitfire, London Pride and Adnams Bitter - though the latter was admittedly served in top-notch condition by the friendly barmaid. All staff observed were seemingly, both amiable and hardworking. To conclude: Overall, this establishment is far too lacking to warrant a return visit from this reviewer, though there is nothing inherently wrong and evidently, such places suite many.

26 Apr 2009 11:24

The Greencoat Boy, Victoria

Situated in a road just off Victoria Street, The Greencoat Boy is a T&J Bernard House serving local office workers and tourists alike. The green-painted exterior is inviting with hanging baskets helping to create a warm invite. Interior wise, the pub is comfortable and cozy, with a tidy, orderly feel throughout. Being a chain pub, there are the usual rubber-stamped fitting, though the hanging urns and jugs go someway to adding a touch of character. The background music was suitably sedate, and with here not being particularly busy on my recent visit, helped to create a somewhat relaxed ambience. A basement bar is available for private hire. A standard food menu is available and the family observed seemed happy enough tucking in. As always, it was pleasing to see an array of real ales on offer Ė even if the choices were a little mainstream: Bombardier, Youngís Bitter, London Pride and Adnams Bitter. The latter was served in perfectly drinkable condition and prices are reasonable for the area. There was only one gentleman behind the bar during my stay, yet service was pleasingly prompt and efficient. To conclude: a generally okay experience and although here lacks any real standout charm, I found the pub to be pleasant and am certainly not repelled by the idea of a return visit.

19 Apr 2009 14:13

The Trocadero, Gravesend

Situated in a road just off the main High Street, I found the Trocadero to be a rather tired and slightly depressing pub on a recent weekend evening visit. The traditional exterior is inviting enough, yet within this single-roomed establishment, there is little to catch ones attention: a spit and sawdust job with limited seating and little - if anything - to really grab your attention in terms or trinkets, ornaments etc. To the rear of the pub is a DJ booth, a plasma television - then showing the football on silent - , and a battered leather sofa. A far from extensive drink-range is a disappointment, with no real ales and only the basic keg lagers and bitters being available - though prices were admittedly on the cheap side. According the poster I observed in the gents, a full-programme of entertainment is on offer: a twice-weekly quiz, karaoke, a Ďcheeseí music night and - as was the occasion on my visit - rock night. Admittedly, the music being aired was rather good, yet the volume control needs to be looked at - Motley Crue and ĎGirls, Girls, Girlsí ensuring the ear-bleeding commenced upon entry. To add a further woe, there were a total of three customers within - and semi-sloshed ones at that! The staff were friendly and welcoming enough, however. To conclude: an OK local in some respects, yet, a desperate and down-trodden kind of place, in serious need of some TLC and perhaps, some kind of an overhaul. I do fear for the future.

6 Apr 2009 16:38

The Albert, St James's

The Albert is a grand old Victorian-era pub and is situated along Victoria Street and in close proximity to both the St James Park tube station and The New Scotland Yard building. I decided to pay a visit on a recent Saturday afternoon and left looking forward to a return visit. Interior is rustic, charming, slightly tatty - and yet, a definite sense of grandeur is most evident. To the immediate right as you enter, is a raised seated area for dining and to the left are some red leather-padded seating: a lone Chelsea Pensioner chose here as his spot to sup a, err, pint of Stella Artois. The L-shaped bar veers round to the fireplace and some additional seating. This is very much a food-orientated establishment and the upstairs is home to the Victoria Dining Room. Clientele within, as expected, where made up of the backpacker and daytrip-to-the-capital brigade. Background music was pleasingly sedate and selected choices restricted to non-offensive rock Ďní roll. At the front bar, three of the five hand pumps were in operation: Adnams Broadside, Bombardier and Deuchars. The latter was served in perfectly drinkable condition. There are two further hand pumps along the side bar, which, by the look of things, would usually be displaying London Pride and Courage Directors Bitter - though both clips were disappointingly turned on my visit. Staff encountered were friendly and service was prompt and with a smile. One more thing to note: Being the hawkeyed individual that I am, I could not help but observe the rather tacky collection of t-shirts, rugby and polo shirts on sale. Who buys these? To conclude: despite the aforementioned clothing, here is an excellent example of a well preserved historic SW London pub Ė give it a go.

27 Mar 2009 14:39

Bromley's, Bromley

Nine months after my initial comments and it appears my prediction was an accurate one.

Hey-ho!

18 Mar 2009 15:43

The Watch House, Lewisham

Situated along the stretch of High St furthest from the local train station, The Watch House has the honour of being Lewishamís member of the JD Wetherspoon chain. A typical and altogether unassuming frontage leads into a rather dark, gloomy and slightly cavernous interior. The industry standard fruit machines were on offer for entertainment along with a couple of plasma televisions Ė although I was somewhat surprised to see The Simpsons getting an airing instead of the more expected Sky Sports News. The usual snippets of local history adorn the walls for the bored and curious - Walter De La Mare and John Wesley being two of the local figureheads I took the opportunity to read up on. The customer base did not appear to be anything too far out of the ordinary for a town centre ĎSpoons, with market traders and the 9am brigade battling it out to be the loudest and rudest. The usual excellent choices were to be found at the bar. As well as the usual commonplace Euro-fizz, Everards Tiger was amongst the guest ales and it was pleasingly to see Courage Directors Bitter saddled up alongside more regular fare like Pedigree And Ė the new Ė 99p option: Ruddles County. Prices were at the cheaper-end of the chains scale, with my partnerís favoured tipple of Coors Light being priced at £2.10. The ĎCurry Clubí was, as-per-usual, excellent value and most quaffable. Staff encountered were friendly and as is often the case, service was prompt and efficient. The toilets were a drawback of sorts, however: perhaps the manager should check out the gents soon. To conclude: another member of the chain that does exactly what is says on the tin. If you know what to expect and generally enjoy spending time in such places, you will find nothing particularly untoward here: a solid 6 out of 10

15 Mar 2009 15:08

The Royal Oak, Dartford


Although I have already reviewed the Royal Oak previously, I would just like to expand and reiterate my original comments a little. Having recently paid my first visit of the year, I was immediately reminded of why I valued it so highly in the first place: this really is a rather excellent Shepherd Neame pub. It is seemingly always busy and with the gentle buzz of free-flowing conversation, the atmosphere is always more than tolerable. The staff are friendly and attentive, also. A good range of the breweries ales are generally available. On my recent visit: Master brew, Kent's Best, Spitfire and Bishops Finger - usually, a pump is reserved for the seasonal offering, although the clip was sadly turned on this particular occasion: the condition of the beer is always good - Oranjiboom and Hurliman are available for the lager lovers. Interior wise, the place is tidy, presentable and most importantly, comfortable. Background music is usually a good mix of rock and alternative classics. There are few plasma screens for sporting events and thankfully, they do not detract from the, usually, tranquil vibe the pub conjures up. There is also an accommodating - and most convenient! - beer patio, complete with heat lamp for the smokers amongst us. To conclude: visit this pub - you will not regret it. It just saddens me slightly, that I fail to frequent here as often as I perhaps should. After my recent experience, that will have to change.

10 Mar 2009 10:33

The Sanctuary House, Westminster

The Sanctuary House is a Fullers Ale & Pie House/Hotel and is situated just along from St James Park tube station. I have paid a couple of visits of late and have satisfied on both occasions. The interior is smart and appealing, with a definite sense of grandeur. Adequate seating can be found in the main bar area and to the rear of the pub is a raised carpeted section which can be hired out. Many prints depicting Westminster adorn the walls. Music is pleasingly and rather suitably, is restricted to background noise. A few flashing fruit machines fail to detract from the tranquil and relaxed atmosphere. Clientele within, as expected, are made up of local office workers and tourists Ė here was somewhat empty upon arrival, though picked up after 5pm. Choice at the bar is extensive enough, with almost the full-range of Fullers ales present - the organic Honey Due is currently restricted to keg-form, however. The condition of both the Discovery and Chiswick Bitter was acceptable (Cask Marquee accredited), though you will need to watch out for short measures Ė prices are a little on the steep-side, also. Both members of staff, however, were polite and seemingly working like Trojans to ensure prompt service once business had picked up. To conclude: I like it here and can envisage future trips. If a couples of slight niggles were to be rectified, then here would be quite an excellent pub.

27 Feb 2009 14:16

The What the Dick Inns, Rochester

The What the Dick Inns? What the Dickens? Well, err, yes, exactly. This Rochester backstreet boozer has a daft name, but was pleasingly fairly normal in every other regard on my recent Saturday evening visit. The anonymous and unassuming exterior is not particularly inviting, though nor is it off putting and within, here is comfortable enough. The carpeted main room is home to a jukebox, a stone fireplace and a collection of clocks. To the rear of the horse shoe bar is the former Ďno smokingí area Ė now more geared towards the diners: a chalkboard proclaims this pubís food to be Ďvegan and veggie friendlyí. I was glad to have stumbled into a busy and semi-lively pub and the clientele observed seemed a friendly enough bunch and are evidently a loyal and very local band of regulars. There is a beer garden of some description, though was not explored by this reviewer. Choice at the bar consisted of an array of the usual keg offerings, supplemented by three hand pumps: one with its clip turned and two serving London Pride and Bombardier respectively. The former, was sadly, served in barely-drinkable condition. The barmaid was friendly enough, however. To conclude: This quirky and bizarrely titled pub evidently keeps its regulars satisfied Ė just not he the ale-loving outsiders! An OK local Ė just not one Iíll be in a rush to return too.

14 Feb 2009 00:16

The Spice of Life, Cambridge Circus

Near Soho and situated in Cambridge Circus is The Spice of Life - a pub I have bypassed dozens of times over the years and never thought to enter. Having time to kill on a recent Friday evening, this reviewer decided to change all that by taking the opportunity and having a peek. I had always presumed here was a Fullers House (why, I donít know), so was pleasantly surprised upon learning this was not the case and that I was in fact in a pub owned by the McMullenís Brewery Ė I had previously never heard of them. Once I had sidestepped the burly bouncers, I found myself within a rather tidy, though visibly formulaic West London pub. The flooring was carpeted, the tables wooden and shiny, the background music bland, though pleasingly unobtrusive. The clientele observed were primarily an expected mix of touristís theatregoers and the like and the atmosphere was restrained and relaxed enough. Down the stairs and past the gents is a basement bar where you can reportedly catch an array of acts, from folk to jazz Ė the entry-fee seemingly being reasonable as well. Back to the bar and the opportunity to sample ales from a brewery previously unkown to me was always going to create interest. The McMullen Cask Ale (£3.05) was well-conditioned and an ultimately most refreshing and satisfying pint. The bar staff were attentive and showed keen awareness in making sure they prioritised who they served. To conclude: I enjoyed my hour-or-so here and can envisage paying more visits if time were on my side: a respectable six out of ten.

4 Feb 2009 21:19

The Orange Tree, Wilmington

A short walk beyond Dartford town centre and one finds themselves in the small village of Wilmington. One of several pubs in the area, The Orange Tree was lucky enough to be graced by my presence on a recent lazy afternoon. A roadside Shepherd Neame House, it has to be noted that building is fairly attractive from the outside and is a definite invite for further exploration. Interior wise, the pub would have probably been split in to several rooms, though today it is one large knocked through area with several nooks and crannies. As you look left, youíll see a pool table and a plasma television: to your right you will see a comfy seating area by the bay window and some pegs to hang your coat and scarf Ė perhaps a nod to the trustworthiness of the regulars? Further on beyond the bar is another area with a fireplace and one which is seemingly more geared towards the diners. Although there was sadly no seasonal offering on my visit, both the Master Brew and Spitfire (£1.95 Ďwhilst stocks lastí) were served in excellent condition by both barmaids. The pub was pleasingly busy and was cheered by the definite buzz that the atmosphere conjured up. There was background music also and was impressed by the non-stop mix of Stones, Deep Purple and Free. In fact, here serves up its fair share of entertainment: ranging from live local bands to ĎPoker Nightí. A ĎCurry and a Pint Nightí is also seemingly a regular weekly fixture. All in all, I liked it here, though my partner later moaned endlessly at feeling itchy and irritable being sat in a particular spot. I shall comment no further on that one! To conclude: yes, I would visit again if passing through.

27 Jan 2009 19:19

The Buckingham Arms, Westminster

Situated along Petty France and a few doors down from the old Passport Office is a rather enticing looking Youngís House called The Buckingham Arms. Clearly a slightly upmarket member of the brewery, I did enjoy my hour-or-so spent within on my recent weekday visit. Inside, chandeliers hang from the ceiling, the flooring is of the pine variety and a genuine sense of grandeur is quite evident. One of the most interesting aspects is the secretive, narrow corridor, which I presume was once an alleyway in a former life. Here is where I decided to hide away and sup my pint. The intimate setting will suit both the solitary drinker and those wishing to partake in the most private of conversations. Background music was pleasing aired at an unobtrusive volume, though was sadly a mix of the usual MOR pap. The clientele present were -as expected Ė made up of nearby office workers and tourists: overall, the atmosphere was one of content, relaxed enjoyment. On the beer front, the breweries usual offerings were on display Ė though the Youngís Special sadly had its clip turned. I opted for the reliable Ordinary (£2.75) and although the condition was acceptable, it was perhaps served a little too chilled. Draught Peroni is available for those lager drinkers who like to stray from the more regular options. The staff encountered were friendly and service was both prompt and efficient. So, to conclude: this is a decent enough drinking establishment and although I cannot envisage here being a regular haunt, it does get the prestigious HTM69 seal of approval. Well done!

20 Jan 2009 19:19

The Rising Sun, Rochester

From the outside, The Rising Sun has the appearance of an enticing local: the kind of pub that suggests real warmth and character. This however, is sadly not the case when within. A musty, unpleasant smell wafted around which made breathing a little uncomfortable. Interior wise, the pub has a tatty, worn and neglected feel about it. Wallpaper is nicotine-stained and rotting, art prints dated and everything about it seems to be throwback to the 1970ís. Entertainment on offer seemed to consist of a jukebox (switched off), a fruit machine and an ancient television Ė showing Coronation Street on our visit. There is second room which was not explored. The clientele were seemingly all on first name terms with each other and it was pleasing that here at least has a community feel about it. Drink selection was sadly unimaginative and primitive. There were no real ales and was somewhat taking aback when the landlady almost barked this fact to me in a militaristic manner. She perked up when I asked for a Stella, at least. To conclude: whilst I left semi-pleased that I had discovered a local with a life, I was disappointed all the same with the choice and err, the smell. If they could do something about the latter and improve the drink selection, then I may be more open to the idea of a return visit.

3 Jan 2009 14:53

The Star and Garter, Bromley

Ah, The Star and Garter. I walk in Ė and then I walk out. This is not a pub to linger in. The atmosphere was cold and stale, the patrons were leering at me, the music was distressing and there were no real ales. To add to this: there was no one behind the bar. Pubs suffer for an assortment of reasons. Although surely, not employing staff is like shooting yourself in the foot somewhat. Did I call at a bad time?

24 Dec 2008 10:16

The Cheshire Cheese, Tower Hill

Situated opposite Fenchurch Street train station is a rather unremarkable, though be it, functional pub called The Cheshire Cheese. An anonymous, though somewhat intriguing exterior leads into a rather cavernous, dull and dimly lit interior. There is very little of interest to catch the eye, with only the international flags pinned to the ceiling grabbing my attention amongst the usual plasma screens and fruit-machines. There is an upstairs bar where a pool table and darts board can be found, though, alas, was not explore by this reviewer. There was piped-in music to add a touch of atmosphere. At the bar itself, a standard selection of keg beers are available, supplemented by a choice of three real ales: Green King IPA, Pedigree and London Pride. This is a Cask Marquee accredited pub, so the condition was good and pleasingly, the prices were reasonable. A menu is available those who like to munch on a burger with their pint, also. I donít. All in all, here is probably okay and best suited to those working in the locality and living in Essex. For those such as I, however, a one-off trip is probably best.

17 Dec 2008 22:30

Bird In Hand, Dartford

Although it has been on my reviewing radar for some time now, until a recent weekday visit, The Bird In Hand had failed to be graced with my presence. A rather anonymous frontage leads into a large open-planned and rather bland interior, with a pool table in one corner and a jukebox being amongst the few objects to catch my eye. Seating is limited and this only adds to the feeling of emptiness. Being the sole patron didnít help either. A sense of lack of imagination is prominent. A standard selection of keg beers are available at the bar, supplemented by two hands pumps: Courage Best and Bombardier Ė though both were sadly unavailable. I opted for the Guinness, which I felt to be a little pricey at £3.00 a pint. The chap serving was friendly enough however and the resident dog (Sid, I believe) was most intrigued by my shoe. There is a garden area out the back, though with the current state of the weather, will have to be left for someone else to investigate and report on. To conclude: here is an okay enough local, though is far too lacking to warrant a return visit from this reviewer.

10 Dec 2008 16:57

The Phoenix, Dartford

Thank you for informing Roger.

A 'Gay bar' next door to The Hufflers Arms? Should be interesting.

8 Dec 2008 12:36

The Charlotte, Crayford

In its previous guise, The Royal Charlotte was a, seemingly, rough and ready locals/commuters pub and was a far from appealing sight. Today however, it has more of a cafť/bar slant with a somewhat more upmarket feel. Interior wise, it is all black and red leather, pine flooring, with a relaxed, chilled, ambience. The clientele within on my recent weekday visit were primarily latte and espresso-sipping housewife-types Ė far removed from the creed that could be found drinking here before. The staff were both friendly and attentive, though came across more like waitresses than barmaids. Shortly after I had settled down, the landlord made an appearance and it was amusing to watch him tempt the women sat opposite to sample his freshly ďhome-madeĒ pizza. On the drink front, it was pleasing to see real ales on offer: Brains SA, Spitfire and - a favourite of mine Ė Ringwood Fortyniner (£2.95). Amongst the usual kegs: Bass Smooth was available for bitter drinkers and draught Bulmerís for the cider-sippers. An accommodating, though drab beer-patio dominates the front of this bar, though it will satisfy the smokers. To conclude: Whilst, I was impressed with my experience in some ways, I personally couldnít feel truly relaxed in such a non-pub-like environment. Many here will undoubtedly like the concept and in that sense, perhaps here succeeds. For me though, a passing pint is probably best.

25 Nov 2008 19:06

The Ship, Gillingham

Thank you for reporting Minx2909.

17 Nov 2008 10:45

The Ship, Gillingham

Abandon ship! Abandon ship!

As already reported, The Ship is no more.

Here was my fathers local, yet it has closed due to the owners bankruptcy. Here's hoping someone can raise it from the seabed.

10 Nov 2008 16:55

Hennessys, Tower Hill

Situated down a side road just off Fenchurch Street is Hennessys. A scruffy and bustling pub on my recent visit, I enjoyed my time spent within. The main bar area is basic with a few pictures, a plasma screen and a fruit machine being amongst the few objects to catch my attention. To the rear of the pub is a small beer patio to keep the smoking mob happy and just before you exit here, there is a narrow staircase leading on to a second bar area. The bar itself was not in operation when I had a peek, though the group of suits sat around seemed suitably entertained nevertheless. Here also lacked the ragged charm of downstairs, with a more modern approach being quite evident. On the beer front, it was pleasing to see a couple of ales vying for my attention: Sharpís Doom Bar and London Pride. The condition of the former was acceptable, though prices are not cheap. The staff were attentive enough and the music aired at a reasonable volume. To conclude: An okay pub worthy of a look.

5 Nov 2008 22:13

East India Arms, Fenchurch Street

The East India Arms is a Cask Marquee accredited Shepherd Neame house and is situated along busy Fenchurch Street. Undoubtedly a pub which gets its fair share of custom during the working week, it was surprisingly fairly quiet on my recent evening visit. A rather bare and anonymous interior with a distant lack of seating, this single-roomed bar does still retain some charm despite the overall blandness. A few decorative brewery mirrors and old photos were however, sadly, the only objects to catch this reviewers wondering eye. Despite no seasonal offering, a decent array of Kentish ales were pleasingly on offer: Masterbrew, Kentís Best (!), Spitfire and the slightly stronger Bishopís Finger. The condition was excellent. The staff were friendly and the background music was aired at a satisfying unobtrusive level. Despite the odd half-hearted gripe, I quite liked it here. I just wish they would borrow a little more personality from somewhere.

5 Nov 2008 19:26

The Bell, Bredhurst

Somewhat isolated, The Bell is a village local attracting a variety of differing types Ė from hungry families, to the younger football crowd. Until a recent midweek evening visit, I hadnít been in here for over a couple of years and being the eager type, have being looking forward to adding some additional comments to my - lets face it - previous minimalistic effort.

Most - unless within walking distance - drive here, so the first sight youíll encounter is the rather anonymous - though be it - accommodating gravelled ďbeer gardenĒ Ė complete with a lovely view of the parked cars. The entrance nearest to here, leads into the establishments main extension. With the usual rubber-stamped fittings, a pubs-by-numbers approach is fairly evident, though it is comfortable enough. There are ample dining facilities and a plasma screen to keep the lads and children amused. Walk through here and youíll lead yourself to the original bar. Tidy and more traditional - though worked on over the years, obviously - this is the favoured spot for yours truly - and by looking around - seemingly where those of a more mature fraternity like to congregate. Amongst the usual kegs is pleasingly, a selection of ales: Spitfire, Courage Best, Directors and one from Chathamís Nelson Brewery. The condition was excellent and prices are average for the area. The staff encountered were attentive enough and the background music was not overly intrusive. I like it quite a lot here and wonít be leaving it another two years!

15 Oct 2008 23:17

The Man of Kent Ale House, Rochester

Having read the Ė mainly Ė excellent reviews lavished upon this Rochester pub, my friend and I looked forward to our recent trip to The Man of Kent Ale House and although we left satisfied, I donít think it is quite the pub some would have you believe Ė though it is rather good.

A traditional, though slightly off-putting exterior leads into an incredibly ramshackle interior. Poorly arranged, tatty leather sofas, tacky knick-knacks, shockingly shoddy curtains (complete with the flag of St George and Invicta) all make for an interesting set-up. One could really be sat in Albert Steptoeís living room. It is altogether eclectic mix which some may feel is a little bohemian Ė others will merely hate it. There is also a small cramped corner area where you can catch the odd live performance. As anticipated, there was an excellent array of Kentish ales on offer Ė and reasonably priced. Amongst those spotted: Gravesend Guzzler, Goachers Light and Stout, and one of two offerings from the Nelson brewery. The condition was acceptable, but not perfect. There were also some unusual continental bottled and draught lagers available. On the beer front Ė here is undisputedly, top-dog and it was nice to be offered a choice of glass: Straight of jug. The lady serving was friendly and forthcoming; the clientele were an interesting mix of the old and young with the few odd-balls thrown in to add character. Everyone was seemingly jovial enough. There was background music of some kind, though it was so quiet, I could barely make it out. To conclude: If you are looking to sample an interesting and variety-packed selection of ales in interesting, slightly awkward surroundings, then here is for you. Personally, I think itís a tad overrated, though Iíll gladly check in again soon.

3 Oct 2008 21:00

The Lord Moon Of The Mall, Whitehall

Situated along Whitehall and as result, in close proximity with both Trafalgar Square and the Houses of Parliament, it would be a fair assumption to make, that the Lord Man of The Mall does a roaring trade. And indeed it surely does. A successful bank-conversion, this Wetherspoon has impressed on my two recent visits. A typical frontage leads to a large and magnificently gloomy interior. The high ceiling and paintings gladly add character. In fact, the pubs structure is probably its greatest asset within. As per most member of the chain, snippets of local history are scattered about to be read by those bored and curious. The usual array of well-conditioned ales can be expected along with the overall, extensive bar selection and reasonable prices. All staff encountered, have been attentive and service has been pleasingly prompt and with a smile. When a Wetherspoon delivers on its promises, I personally, find them hard to knock. Here, is an example.

26 Sep 2008 20:21

The Tom Cribb, Piccadilly

Tucked away just beyond Leicester Square and conveniently situated opposite the Trafalgar Studios theatre, The Tom CribB is indeed ideal for a pre or post show tipple. A Shepherd Neame house (formerly Nicholsonís-owned), this tiny Victorian pub has a delightfully periodic exterior which leads into a quaint, homely, though be it, pokey, bar area. A boxing theme dominates the wall by the entrance and the traditional fixtures and fittings made the homely experience inside this old and unspoilt pub. The real ales on offer were the standard Spitfire and a very rare outing for Canterbury Jack. Service was seemingly attentive enough, although perhaps, the member of staff serving yours truly, was ever-so slightly dour. Pleasingly, here also is a pub which serves up good old fare and not bloody pasta and meatballs. I recommend a stop.

26 Sep 2008 18:14

The Devonshire Arms, Camden

Goths, punks and weirdoís galore. Welcome then, to the Devonshire Arms. Loud thrash metal blaring; pierced punks perched on bar-side stools, tables decorated with movie flyers and a garish purple and black colour scheme. The toilets are disgusting. This is, most definitely not, a pub for the faint hearted. However, this reviewer enjoyed his experience within. Yes, here may scare some, but for us open-minded souls, places like this are too much a curiosity, not to be explored. The gentleman behind the bar was friendly and the Hobgoblin ale (£3.05) tasted as it should. The glass was reassuringly dirty Ė sorry, that last part is a lie. Here also plays host to live bands on selected nights. Personally, I feel a trip to Camden would be incomplete without a stop here.

19 Sep 2008 18:44

Lord Homesdale, Bromley

With pubs all around closing at a rapid rate, many a wannabe commentator is readily giving theyíre opinion as to why. Smoking bans, rising prices and a possible change in our social habits are all reasons given on a regular basis. One factor, however, is often overlooked Ė and that is this: Establishments often close for one simple reason. They are not worth going to. A key contender for that most unwanted of mantles must surely go to The Lord Homesdale. Situated in a residential area, it was probably at one time, a key meeting place for the locals Ė a place where they would gather, drink and regale tales. Today, it is none of those things. It is, sadly, like many pubs visited by this reviewer, completely void of redeeming features. No ales, no character, no inspiration and no sense of the past. It is just a complete shambles. White painted walls, pine flooring, a jukebox, a pool table and two plasma screens. That is, your lot unfortunately. My visit was on a Sunday afternoon and once the football was over, every single patron, other than yours truly, cleared off. That, sadly, sums up the scenario. Perhaps they all felt it was time to leave, but I think a more accurate assumption would be that they werenít given a reason to stay.

12 Sep 2008 00:20

The Bricklayers Arms, Bromley

The Bricklayers Arms is a Shepherd Neame house, situated away from the main town centre and as such, seemingly only attracts local residents and those such as I, who happen to pass by. The exterior is one of enticement and indeed, the interior has a warmth and pleasant glow to it. With a wooden feel throughout, it may to some, seem somewhat bland and contrived, but I myself couldnít help but feel immediately settled in this cosy pub. To the rear of this establishment is a retro-style jukebox and outside in an accommodating, heated, smoking patio and shelter. Of note, outside is also home to a dartboard. The usual lagers (for the brewery) were on offer and Spitfire and Masterbrew were the well-conditioned ales available on my visit yesterday (10 Sept). The background music was decent and aired at a gentle volume. The staff were friendly and attentive, also. To conclude: I found here to be most acceptable and I look forward to a return visit at some point.

11 Sep 2008 20:55

The Phoenix, Victoria

Looks can be deceiving and upon approach, indeed, the exterior of The Phoenix is seemingly inviting. However, once inside this SW1 establishment, it is more than evident that here is not your traditional pub. No doubt, once upon a time, it catered for those, such as I, who enjoy the tranquil old-fashioned local. But today, with its anonymous feel and blandness, it merely means to attract those who simply donít care about the surroundings they choose to drink, eat, or socialise in. There is absolutely nothing to engage the eye whatsoever. No interesting ornaments or trinkets, just plain walls and floorboards, Evan the tables and chairs are boring. The staff were friendly enough, however, and they at least, pleasingly, had a coupe of real ales on offer. If only the condition was good. My pint of Adnams tasted as if it had been heated up! The other Ďproper beerí was Deuchars IPA. Food is on offer and this is seemingly the main concern here, though as I didnít sample anything, canít comment. There is a plasma screen and it was showing sport, minus the volume. Oh well, the toilets were clean at least.

30 Aug 2008 16:41

The Travellers Tavern, Victoria

Those within the train station aside, I thought The Shakespeare was the worst of the pubs in the Victoria vicinity. Well, no, actually, it isnít. For you see, it has a contender for that particular unwanted mantel Ė The Travellers Tavern. And what a dire excuse for a boozer it is. Situated just outside the coach station, it is undoubtedly a place which attracts its fair share of custom, mainly made up of those poor wretches desperate for a drink after a torrid journey aboard the National Express coaches. The pubs interior is large and sprawling, with wooden tables and chairs and not a lot else. There is nothing to engage the eye. The person who served me behind the bar was miserable and the atmosphere, one of desperation. The music was monotonous. There was a large plasma screen to the very rear of the pub, though the contrast was so poor, it wasnít worth even straining your eyes to see Final Score. (My visit took place on Sat 23 Aug). I thought T&J Bernard houses were generally of a good standard. What happened? Visit only if desperate.

30 Aug 2008 13:46

The Cask and Glass, Victoria

Situated in a road just off busy Victoria Street, is one of central Londonís few Shepherd Neame houses, The Cask and Glass. A picturesque, traditional exterior Ė complete with hanging baskets, tables and chairs Ė leads to a single-roomed bar, with, in all truthfulness, probably just about enough room to swing a small cat. To your left, as you enter, is a small plasma television and a couple of small tables, to be found on you right, a few padded leather pews and some additional seating. Dotted around adorning the walls, are black and white photos depicting times gone by, caricatures of politicians and famous figures and various old artefacts. It all made for a very civil drinking environment and the pub really does feel a word away from the more corporate drinking barns close by. The clientele on my recent afternoon visit (23 Aug) were predominantly locals and a couple of tourists. For such a small pub, it was pleasing to see a decent array of ales. As well as the regular Spitfire (£3.15) and Masterbrew, were the rarer Kentís Best and the organic seasonal offering, Whitstable Bay. To conclude, I found here to be a wonderful little drinking den. Charming, quaint, warm, I could go on. Choose your time of visit wisely (I suspect it can get unbearably claustrophobic when busy) and I am fairly confident youíll leave feeling rather pleased you have discovered such a delightful little pub.

25 Aug 2008 16:25

The Slug and Lettuce, Bromley

A very bizarre scene got played out, in here, Bromleyís Slug & Lettuce, last night. (20 Aug). I handed over a £10 note to pay for my £3.30(!) pint of Heineken, only to then be informed that the bar had run out of change. The matter was of course resolved, but this was a first-time experience for this reviewer and pub-goer. Has this ever happened to you? Boy, I must be bored!

21 Aug 2008 17:36

The White Swan, Covent Garden

With the marching on of time and this reviewerís love of real ale on the growth, itíd only be fair to admit that plastic ĎIrish-themedí bars have hardly been in contention when weighing up any pub to visit in a given area. So, baring that in mind, I was surprised with myself for so readily and willingly popping my head in here, Covent Gardens very own member of the Oí Neillís chain. The feel within was a little more relaxed and civil than what Ė often to my misfortune Ė I have encountered in the town centre branches. Indeed, it was also smaller than many others ventured to and towards the back of the pub, was surprised to encounter a somewhat more, cosy hostility than anticipated. Dimly-lit, padded seating, Irish knickknacks and assorted trinkets, and a noise never heard in a themed Irish bar in central London before Ė traditional Irish music. Okay, so the Manic Street Preachers and Beatles were soon vying for attention, yet still, itís all good to my ears. The staff were, actually, polite and attentive enough and was also pleased with the reasonable prices. I chose not to eat, preferring a refreshing Guinness Red, though my lady friend thought the food served up was quite edible. Saturday (August 2) was a tiring day and was thankful, though be it, surprised, that such an establishment catered for the days end so perfectly.

4 Aug 2008 11:11

The Drayman, Bexleyheath

Update on The Drayman: It is now advertising itself as an Over 21ís bar. Also, live music is a seemingly a regularly occurrence. Bizarrely, the cockney duo, Chas and Dave performed here a couple of months back.

My low rating still stands.

25 Jul 2008 14:34

The Woodman, Dartford

Having driven past in cars or rode past in buses for years, last Wednesday evening (July 23), I finally got to pay a visit to The Woodman. What I encountered, was a seemingly friendly enough locals establishment, which was pleasingly busy. Interior is admittedly, nothing to get excited about, with the kind of dull, Mock-Tudor set-up that so many pubs, to my bafflement, seem to have. A jukebox, pool table, darts board and fruit machines, were on offer for the entertainment. To the rear of the pub, is a small patio area that leads on to a whopping beer garden, though in all truthfulness, is nothing more than a long lawn with a small childrenís play area and a few benches scattered about. It could be a real suntrap, weather permitting, of course. On the beer front, it was the usual kegs, with sadly, on my visit, three redundant hand pumps. All in all, here is acceptable without being overly appealing. Iíd never make here a regular stop, yet can envisage a return visit at some point, perhaps.

25 Jul 2008 13:17

Play, Bexleyheath

Surprise, surprise. As predicted in my earlier review, Play did indeed have a short life. It closed a while back.

21 Jul 2008 14:49

The Victoria, Victoria

Although, only a short stroll from the station, The Victoria doesnít seem to attract the commuters like other pubs in the vicinity. As well as tourists, there are of course, local office workers, though here doesnít seem to have an abundance of those seeking a quick pint pre Ė heading for the tube or train. The exterior is inviting enough and leads through to, actually, a rather large interior. There are cubbyholes and snugs to please the groups or those like me, who just want to hide away for a bit! The flooring and wooden feel throughout, does, alas, make for a rather anonymous feel. The toilets are in the basement. The piped in music is pleasant however and at a decent volume. On the beer front, Green King IPA, Youngís Bitter and London Pride are the ales on offer, although, the latter has only been available on my two recent visits. The staff are attentive enough and it was pleasing to actually be served a whole pint and not ĺ, which sadly seems to be the norm in many central London pubs. I quite like it here.

20 Jul 2008 12:50

The Assembly, Tower Hill

Being a very occasional frequenter to The Liberty Bounds Wetherspoon, I have surprised myself for, until last Friday (July 4), failing to notice the bar situated literary next door, The Assembly. I decided to take the plunge and popped my head in and in all truthfulness, wish I hadnít bothered. For you see, this is a bar aimed at those who enjoy monotonous music, ďtrendyĒ seating, wood panelled flooring and big modern art prints for dťcor. And just what is the point of the open kitchen? Is being able to se the chef cook going to result in better tasting food? Doubt it. The usual euro fizz was on offer (Stella £3.40), though it was pleasing to see a real ale, Adnams Bitter, I believe. The staff were friendly enough and of Polish origin. Taking into account the custom the bar anticipates and primarily caters for, than, I suppose it does the job, though itís most certainly not a place youíll see this reviewer visit twice - One more thing. You can get wine in here at £250 a bottle.

9 Jul 2008 21:55

Pommelers Rest, Tower Bridge

A former hotel, The Pommelers Rest is a Wetherspoon situated just beyond Tower Bridge. Being away from the city somewhat, it seemingly attracts a mixture of locals and tourists as opposed to the suited variety you encounter at the other end of the bridge. The colour scheme within is green a red and is rather dark, perhaps even, gloomy. However, it was tidy enough and despite being stuck in conversation with the pub bore, I found it to be a decent enough place to settle for a sup on my visit, last Wednesday evening, (July 2). There were a couple of guest ales to supplement the regulars on offer and my pint of the Ďlocalí ĎTower Bridgeí ale washed down a treat. This pub was also, pleasingly cheaper than other ĎSpoons nearby. The toilets are down a staircase. Overall, here is a decent pub, nothing more, nothing less.

6 Jul 2008 13:27

Bromley's, Bromley

For those unaware, Bromleyís is the successor to the failure that was Sky Bar. The bar, that in fact, only a short while ago, had replaced the buildings original inhabitant, The Bell.

I give it a year, tops.

22 Jun 2008 19:32

Gravity Bar, Dublin

The Gravity Bar is the finale to the Guinness Storehouse tour, in which I recently paid a reasonable 14 euros to partake in. The bar itself benefits highly from the stunning views across the City of Dublin, but is otherwise, just an accommodating oval shaped room where you can drink your complementary pint of the Ďblack stuffí. It found it to be a suitable ending to a highly pleasurable experience and taking in all I had learnt on the floors beneath only made the pint more enjoyable. However, despite the accolades above, I will not be rating this place as it isnít technically a free house of any kind. It is a part of a pre-pay tour and is otherwise, not accessible to the public.

10 out of 10 for the tour though!

22 Jun 2008 14:24

D:Ream Bar, Gravesend

Situated just opposite Gravesend train station is The Railway Tavern. A commuters pub, one suspects, but seemingly a place which has its own specific crowd of regulars. I paid an afternoon visit last Monday (9 June) and after a couple of pints, left without any particular views on the establishment. I found it to be OK, nothing more. Its not spectacular, yet its certainly not offensive. Its actually a fairly large pub, though there was only a few customers present on my visit and all seemed well acquainted with each other. No ales were available, so opted for the obligatory Stella. There is a jukebox and a few fruit machines. Cheap food is offered at discount prices. The staff were friendly and welcoming. Anything else to add? Not really. It serves a purpose, its okay for a quickie before or after a journey, but its not a place to make a specific trek to.

14 Jun 2008 13:33

The Somerset Arms, Gravesend

Monday (9 June) and one finds themselves in the town of Gravesend. The first pub visited was here, The Somerset Arms. Situated almost opposite the local train station, I found it to be an incredibly charming and quirky place to settle for a sup. There is an intimate feeling within, the little cubby-holes and seated areas only adding to the cosiness. As for the dťcor, well if old movie posters and memorabilia are your thing, then youíll love it in here. They are everywhere. From Casablanca to Saturday Night Fever, the walls are littered with interesting knickknacks to engage the eye. The locals within seemed friendly enough and it was pleasingly busy, which only proves my theory that a good pub will always thrive, regardless of smoking bans, rising beer prices etc, though it must be said, it was surprisingly cheap in here. Amongst the ales on offer were the excellent Hobgoblin and Youngís Bitter as well as a real cider. I only stopped for two, but Iíll definitely return for another at some point. Three cheers for the Somerset Arms then.

11 Jun 2008 15:44

The Peacock, Tower Hill

Knowing that I have walked past several times and never thought to enter, last Thursday (29 May), this reviewer thought it about time he finally checked out The Peacock. In all truthfulness, itís no looker from the outside and indeed, is rather plain within. However, its basic no-thrills sensibilities actually work in its favour. I found it to be a pub that serves it purposes and whatís more, serves it well. The clientele is naturally made up of local suited office types and one suspects it can get fairly busy on a Friday evening. There wasnít a great deal on the ground floor to grab my attention, aside from the obligatory fruit machine and plasma television. Up the spiral staircase and you are confronted with additional seating and surprisingly for the area, a darts board. Oh, and the toilets. There were three hand pumps in operation on my visit and the Black Sheep was both reasonably priced and refreshing. Iíll think Iíll visit again.

4 Jun 2008 07:12

The Royal George, Greenwich

The Royal George is a small single-roomed Shepherd Neame house, situated a ten or so minute walk from Greenwich train station. Being in a residential area and away from the main hub of the touristy part of town, it was, as expected, a localís affair. However, those within were very friendly and the lady behind the bar was smiley and welcoming. Interior was basic, yet homely, with a definite nod to the towns maritime history. Brass objects adorned the walls and there is a model ship above the redundant fire place. The only concession to the modern age was seemingly the large plasma screen. Three ales were on offer and that is where the problem lied on my afternoon visit this past Thursday (May 22). My pint of the seasonal Early Bird was foul and although it was readily and apologetically replaced with the more regular Spitfire, that too, failed the taste test in a big way. This was disappointing. If it wasnít for the beers, Iíd probably be open to the idea of a return visit.

24 May 2008 12:11

The Nags Head, Rochester

Just what is going on at The Nags Head? The prices are soaring and itís getting ridiculous. A pint of Stella is £3.50 and Guinness is £3.10. The Real Ale has been Ďunavailableí on recent visits too. The music is still good (best jukebox in the Medway), yet I donít understand the price hikes. It hasnít seemed particularly less busy since the smoking ban last year, so surely it canít be down to a lack of custom and there doesnít appear to be a change in management.

I think Iíll be changing my allegiance to the excellent Britannia Cafť Bar down the road.

18 May 2008 12:17

Ship Centurion Arminius, Whitstable

As pub names go, The Ship Centurion Arminius ha to be up there with the most bizarre, yet there is nothing odd about this place, no, like the other pubs visited by this reviewer on his Bank Holiday (5 May) visit to the coast, it was a pleasure. The exterior is inviting as it is, but even more so for the ale aficionado as a ĎCAMRA Pub Of The Yearí banner hangs proudly above the door, Inside this airy and bright establishment, pictures of the town in times gone by adorn the walls along with a couple of TVís for sport. There is also another room to the rear of the pub with a larger screen to accommodate bigger groups. It was fairly busy on my late-afternoon visit and the regulars within seemed friendly. Several ales were on offer and my pint of Adnamís was just right. There is sadly no beer garden, but hey, you canít have everything. This is another good Ďun in the town of Whitstable.

14 May 2008 21:29

The Coach and Horses, Whitstable

Mondayís recent Bank Holiday (5 May) trip to the coastal town of Whitstable was a sheer pleasure and the fourth pub visited, The Coach and Horses, was another joy. Like The East Kent (itís almost opposite) itís a Shepherd Neame establishment and is situated away from the bustle of the main town. The exterior glittered in the sunshine and just beckoned me in. I was confronted with a tidy, well-presented bar. I sadly cannot recall too much of its individual detail, yet what I do know, is that it was homely. The ales (as expected) were excellent and my first ever pint of the seasonal Early Bird was mightily refreshing. This is evidently a localís affair and when at the bar, couldnít help but notice the sense of calmness resonating amongst the regulars scattered within. To the rear of the pub is a dining area where books and various assorted trinkets adorned the shelves. Further on still, is a real sun-trap of a beer patio, basic, yet perfectly accommodating and one I found ideal for soaking up the late-afternoon rays and supping a fresh pint of ale. Whitstable had done it again. Another cracker, pay a visit.

13 May 2008 19:02

The Old Neptune, Whitstable

The Old Neptune, has a pub name ever been more apt for its surroundings? Situated right by the sea, this is indeed an old fishermanís pub. Iím pleased I paid a visit on my Bank Holiday trip to the coast (5 May), yet, sadly, this picturesque old watering-hole has problems. Okay, its locality perhaps plays its part and maybe, just maybe, the public holiday and the nice weather were reasons as good as any, but I have never had such a torrid time attempting to get served. To be faced with Stella in plastic glasses or watery Green King IPA at the end of the mad scrum was another let down. Hey-ho, anyway, interior is basic, though homely and the protest-era Bob Dylan wannabe was entertaining with his guitar and harmonica. As reported, there are plenty of benches outside to soak up the sun and enjoy your pint. IPA, as if! The food being served-up by the attractive bar wrenches looked tasty though wasnít sampled by this reviewer, nor was it by the group of Londoners seated opposite who thought throwing food was more appropriate than swallowing. Go on, pay a visit Ė just expect a wait at the bar and watch out for flying chips.

10 May 2008 11:43

The Duke Of Cumberland Hotel, Whitstable

The second pub visited on my Bank Holiday jaunt to sunny Whitstable (5 May) was here to The Duke Of Cumberland. Situated within the heart of the town, itís a large, sprawling Shepherd Neame pub with a genuine feeling of grandeur about it. The usual ales were on offer and as expected, condition was good, though perhaps my Kentís Best was a little fizzy. Walk through the main bar area and you find yourself in a spacious dining area with regulars and tourists tucking into plentiful portions of fish and chips. There is courtyard with a balcony and believe it or not, a stage for performing Ė we watched a guy tuning his guitar for 20 minutes and then deciding not to play. This is another pleasant pub worth visiting.

10 May 2008 11:21

The East Kent, Whitstable

One has to take advantage of sunny Bank Holidays and so last Monday (5 May) I found myself in the Kent Coast town of Whitstable. The first pub encountered was the East Kent, a Shepherd Neame House situated just far away enough from the main town to detract the tourist hoards. It looks enticing from the outside and it was welcoming and well furnished within. Smart, though with a traditionalist feel. There wasn't a great deal within to grab my attention admittedly, though I did notice a small pool table and a modern-style juke box. The ales on offer included Spitfire and Master brew. To be found at the rear of the establishment is an accommodating enough, though be it, basic beer patio - complete with giant heated umbrellas to please the smoking mob on those days more bleak. The locals noticed, seemed friendly and well acquainted with each other. However, this seemingly and pleasingly, is a place where non-regulars are made to feel welcome. I have to recommend a stop.

8 May 2008 12:54

Infernos, Welling

Thank you for informing Zaphod. There were always dodgy types to be found in Infernos, but am surprised all the same - especially about the manager being arrested! If I am thinking of the correct person, he seemed okay. Obviously not then!

I actually hope it doesn't reopen. Various manager tried and failed and the trend would only continue.

1 May 2008 11:54

Marquis of Lorne, Gillingham

Situated next door to the rather lifeless Black Lion pub, is the Marquee Of Lorne. I paid a late morning/early afternoon visit last Wednesday (23 April) and was surprised to encounter a fairly lively and dare I say it, buzzing and vibrant local. Certainly, the conversations I over heard amongst the regulars was basic and the language somewhat unsavoury, yet it was pleasing to find myself in a pub with a bit of purpose and not one which is merely rotting away - as is the case with so many other 'locals' in towns such as Gillingham. The choice at the bar was naturally mainstream, though the one ale on offer (Bombardier) was expertly poured by the overly friendly landlord and was a snip at £2.30. The layout is rather basic and the front-bar a little pokey. At the back of the pub is a pool table, a second bar, though be it, redundant, and the gents. In fact, the only major gripe I had on my visit was the door to the toilets being open. Watching men pee (and fart!) is hardly appropriate when trying to sup a pint. All in all, this isn't wonderful pub, though it is functional, currently has a life and I personally feel that places like this should be visited before they're gone for good.

29 Apr 2008 11:25

The Bricklayers Arms, Bexleyheath

Ignore my review dated 17th Oct 06. I have never visited this pub.

See my comments regarding the issue on the page for the nearby Kings Arms. That was the pub visited!

22 Apr 2008 12:56

Ship, Monument

How do you escape a Nicholsonís boozer in central London? Itís possible of course, but there does seem to be rather a lot of them and as stated in previous reviews, they are all fairly similar. The Ship however, is perhaps a little different. Situated in a court yard around the Eastcheap/Fenchurch Street area, it may attract the usual suspects in the form of its clientele (hello suits!), offer your ears the usual, though be it, inoffensive MOR music and serve up well-conditioned real ale, but whets different about it is the interior. Both the downstairs and upstairs bars are incredibly snug and quaint. I really was quite surprised and as so many seemingly enjoy standing outside smoking (evident enough on my visit, Weds 9th April) you may even get a seat inside. With the old fashioned-style furnishings, you could easily be fooled into thinking this is genuine old city hostility. After all Iím sure it was before it became a McPub. Sorry, that was unintentionally harsh. I do actually recommend a stop here and Nicholsonís do tend to represent the better side of the pub chain.

15 Apr 2008 18:49

The Crutched Friar, Tower Hill

A Nicholsonís establishment, The Crutched Friar isnít too dissimilar to other members of the chain. It serves an array of well-conditioned ales, has pleasant, if a little MOR, background music and its clientele ranges from the odd tourist to suited office types. Situated near the City, expect more of the latter in this particular pub. The usual food was on offer and everything was as to be expected on my visit last Wednesday (9th April). One possible standout however, is perhaps the beer patio, a rarity in central London.

15 Apr 2008 18:27

Churchills, Chatham

Being situated opposite a bus station and a shopping centre is hardly likely to elevate a pubs exterior, yet Churchills needn't have any worries there. Its rather attractive and indeed, even more so inside. It is however, a pub that needs help - and a lot of it. With Chandeliers, a high ceiling and a working fire place, its all rather nice. The bar itself has an old fashioned set-up and there is a second room with a pool table. There are unfortunately no real ales however and despite the friendliness of the guy behind the bar, it was rather gloomy and quiet. I'm sure being the only patron on my afternoon visit last Friday (4th August) may have had a bearing, but I felt like I was in a library. There is well-positioned plasma screen, but quite frankly, I wasn't in the mood for watching Phil Collins or The Coors. This is a pub that deserves better.

10 Apr 2008 18:31

The Jolly Caukers, Chatham

Located in a side road just off the local High Street is The Jolly Caukers, A most definitely localís affair, I did however find it friendly enough on my visit last Friday (4th April), if a little odd. There were kids in prams and one behind the bar helping himself to a J20. I know its Chatham, but stillÖ Dťcor most certainly isnít a plus point Ė its tatty, with a kind of semi-navel theme. Photos of battleships adorn the walls along with various other sea related objects. There was no great choice at the bar (the usual kegs etc), though it was pleasing to see one hand pump. (Adams I believe). There is a little beer garden, though I didnít venture out there. To conclude, not a pub I can see myself entering again, though it certainly wasnít quite the dire experience I had anticipated.

6 Apr 2008 17:40

The Command House, Chatham

I was unfortunate enough to have a drink here; The Command House last Friday afternoon (4th April) and cannot envisage a return visit soon. Situated alongside the River Medway, the pub (well, bar. It was a pub once though) looks enticing enough on the outside and the stage for (presumably) live music is an encouraging sign, but thatís pretty much where the good points end. Upon entering, expect to have your ears insulted by the overly loud music, expect your eyes to flicker in horror at the bodged refurbishment and be prepared to faint at the prices. I kid you not, £3.18 for San Miguel. There were no ales, though two hand pumps were redundant. Decoration, perhaps? Looking around, everything is black. Black plasma screens, leather sofas and tables. The clientele were male dominated and Id expect youíd meet a few from the nearby barracks here. They do serve up the usual pub grub, though like the beer, its not cheap. I wouldnít bother.

6 Apr 2008 13:38

Henry's Cafe Bar, Bromley

This bar closed a while back and is now an Ivory Lounge. Bromley, you lucky things!

26 Mar 2008 12:55

The William Camden, Bexleyheath

A station pub can serve a valuable purpose Ė to ease the pain after a torrid train journey! Yet, they are of course, not solely there just for the benefits of the stressed commuter, they generally tend to have their own set of regulars and The William Camden (opposite Bexleyheath train station) is no exception. Itís a large establishment, split in two, with one having pool tables and the other having the obligatory fruit machines and plasma screens to keep those within entertained. Its quite open spaced and that doesnít sit too well with me. It was a keg only affair at the bar, so opted for Guinness. I visited last Wednesday (19th March) around 5-ish; the bar I was in was probably half-full, though I suspect it fills up when all the London workers start to pile off the train. Overall, as station pubs go, I found it to be okay and I would stop for a beer again, yet it isnít a place to make a specific trip too.

24 Mar 2008 13:14

The Two Brewers, Dartford

I paid a visit or two here, to The Two Brewers a couple of years ago and todayís afternoon visit (17th March) was my first since. As already reported, the pub has indeed had a refurbishment and is all the better for it. Tidy, cosy and well furnished, I enjoyed soaking up the surroundings during my hour spent in here. The low-beamed ceiling adds a welcome touch of intimacy and it all makes for a rather quaint experience. I noticed six hand pumps, though only one was seemingly in operation. At £2.95, the Guinness is slightly pricey, but for killing time and chilling out with the daily rag, you could do a lot worse than being in here. Go on, pay a visit Ė Iíll be doing so again. I just hope the next time Iím here there will be more than three patrons present!

17 Mar 2008 19:40

The Kings Arms, Bexleyheath

The below review is currently on the page of the nearby Bricklayers Arms, but the pub I am actually referring to is this one, The Kings Arms. A complete cock up on my part, I can only apologise. Iíve never even visited The Bricklayers Arms!

My visit was way back in October 06, so I suppose is a little out of date. Better late than never though!

Prior to last Fridays visit (13th Oct), my only previous time spent in The Bricklayers Arms was one Saturday afternoon a couple of years back. It was a scruffy old dump then and while the fairly recent refurbishment has been successful, the pub has seemingly retained the run-down feel of old. Despite this though, there is a definite warmness to this pub, which it distinctively lacked on my last visit. With both a Lloyds Bar and regular ĎSpoons nearby, this pub isnít the cheapest in the area (though it certainly isnít dear), yet if you prefer your fellow customers to be little more on the mature side and your drinking venue a little more traditional, then you could do worse than this old watering hole.

16 Mar 2008 16:12

The Wat Tyler, Dartford

The Watt Tyler, not a pub I had ventured in for quite some time (two or so years) and certainly not a place Iíve given a lot of thought to, yet last Friday (7th March) I found myself in here ordering a pintÖ and what a pint. The ĎFreedom aleí (one of several real ales on offer) was absolutely glorious. I intended to stop for one and ended up staying for four. The actual pub was a reminder that the tradition busy local is still in operation in these parts. It was late afternoon and the place was packed Ė great stuff. The staff are friendly and the regulars seemingly have plenty of community spirit. Pay a visit. Places like this are too much of a rarity these days.

12 Mar 2008 18:17

The Ivy Leaf, Dartford

A short walk beyond the excellent Malt Shovel pub and you'll find yourself at The Ivy Leaf. It's a large enough establishment situated opposite a row of shops and a grassed area. Its split into two sections, with fire places in each. Brass ornaments adorn the walls along with a couple of TV's for sport. The staff were friendly and attentive and the locals within nattered away calmly. There was pleasant background music playing at a reasonable volume. A few ales were pleasingly on offer and my pint of London Pride (£2.80) was served just right. Overall, a relaxing and pleasing experience. I'd certainly visit again sometime.

12 Mar 2008 13:01

Infernos, Welling

I intended to pay a visit here, to Infernoís, last Thursday (6th March) but it was closed and appeared boarded up. If it isnít a refurbishment and it is indeed, a goner, then it is of little surprise. Since the demise of the supposedly troublesome Moon and Sixpence, this large pub has tried through a succession of management changes to make something of itself and inevitably failed each time. Inspired ideas (films on Thursdays and live bands on Sundays) ultimately failed to elevate this establishment beyond its murky past and too often than not, this pub was just plain empty. A cheap Wetherspoon down the road and a plethora of boozers in neighbouring Bexleyheath, didnít/havenít helped its chances. I had some fun times here, but like life itself, it all has to end some day.

9 Mar 2008 16:37

The Old Thameside Inn, London Bridge

I must admit to being a little surprised by the bad reviews this pub has received. I paid a visit here to the Old Thameside Inn last Thursday evening (21st Feb) and left satisfied enough. Sure, Iíve set foot in dozens of better establishments, but here is okay for a couple of pints. It a Nicholsonís affair, so expect wood and lots of it. The front bar is tidy enough and this leads to a dining section to the rear. There is also a down stairs area though this often hired out I believe. Unsurprisingly for the chain, a decent array of well conditioned ales was on offer and my Landlord hit the spot. Prices seemed average for the area. As its name suggest, this ĎInní is indeed, by the Thames and there is really no disputing that the view across the river is quite pleasant. You get a good view of the ĎGherkiní building! There is also a benches area with those giant umbrellas to satisfy the smoking mob. I wonít be rushing back, certainly, but all the same, youíd rather drink here then in an All Bar One, no?

27 Feb 2008 19:27

The Oast House, London Bridge Station

Already reviewed by myself, yet I nipped in here, The Oast House, on Thursday evening (21st Feb) for a sneaky pint prior to meeting the girlfriend and thought it suitable to add an additional comment or two.

This mustíve been my first visit in probably a couple of years or so and I left quietly impressed. Three hand pumps were in operation (Bass, Pedigree and Speckled Hen) and the latter was reasonably priced and served just right. Interior was tidy, background music pleasing and those huddled within sat calmly nattering to colleagues and fellow commuters and of course, there were those like myself, waiting for their bird and catching up with the London Paper! Certain other station bars should really take note.

23 Feb 2008 18:49

The Fox and Hounds, Dartford

A large estate pub situated a short walk from the High Street and local swimming pool, The New Fox and Hounds is a place probably best restricted to the nearby residents. I paid a visit last Sunday (17th Feb) and it didnít exactly leave a lasting impression. The pub is divided into a Games Room and Saloon Bar. Neither was exactly heaving. There were probably half a dozen or so gathered round the bar and they all knew each others names. Interior wise, I thought of as quite impressive. It was tidy, well presented and had a certain feel about it. Almost as if such a pub deserves better. The usual kegs were on offer, with Courage Best amongst them, though whether youíd want to drink a non- real ale version of such a fine beer, I donít know. Not an awful pub, but unless you like checking out all the pubs in a given area, then here isnít worth the trek to.

23 Feb 2008 18:38

Eltham GPO, Eltham

In response to middenmakerís last couple of comments, Ďwhat is going on hereí is exactly what is to be expected of, in probably, the scummiest and most low-life pub in the south of England. I paid a few visits here to The Old Post Office (see my earlier short review) and whilst I left with my teeth intact, there was fighting on each occasion, I was offered illegal substances and the menace in the air was just intolerable Ė and ask yourself this. Is a place, reportedly frequented by those embroiled in the murder of Steven Lawrence worthy of a visit by decent citizens? Nope, thought not.

23 Feb 2008 18:26

The Fleur De Lis, Gillingham

A corner location pub, quite prominent in appearance, yet pretty unremarkable in every other respect, The Fleur De Lis is one for the locals only. Cream walls, a worn carpet and a sense of sheer tedium Ė that sums up my time spent in this two sectioned pub last Friday evening (8th Feb). Those within seemed friendly enough and there was a jukebox. I do like a pub with a jukebox, sighÖ Oh, there was a pool table and an Alsatian dog on patrol. There were no ales. Read this and save yourself a visit, eh?

11 Feb 2008 20:03

The Rose Inn, Gillingham

Situated a short walk from the train station, the Rose Inn is a basic, no-thrills boozer serving the nearby residents. A little bland and featureless, though welcoming enough. No ales were on offer unfortunately. A jukebox and a pool table was all that caught my eye. It was fairly empty upon entering early Friday evening (8th Feb), but picked up a little just prior to when I made my exit. The pub is actually split in two with (I think) different entrances. All in all, I found it to be a pub of little distinction, yet it's always nice to come acroos pubs with a bit of community spirit.

11 Feb 2008 12:52

Eagle Tavern, Rochester

The Eagle Tavern is bare, dull, drab, mundane and a little depressing. The white wash walls and scruffy flooring hardly elevated the experience. Clientele within seemed basic in intelligence and the music (well, Ďdanceí) was too loud for a Friday afternoon. However, the outdoor area seemed spending and well kept. I didnít venture out there, but staring out through the window was certainly preferable to making contact with the unruly crowd sat at a nearby table. One solitary ale was on offer, but this is a lager pub. The toilets are a bit of a trek down a staircase, but were pleasingly clean. Weather permitting, Iíd perhaps visit for the garden, but with our weather, well lets just say, Friday (8th Feb) will probably prove to be my sole visit.

10 Feb 2008 18:20

The Two Brewers, Rochester

A little gem, The Two Brewers, a Shepherd Neame pub, is probably the best pub along Rochester High Street. Small, cosy, intimate and relaxing within and the locals were friendly. It all made for an enjoyable hour or so last Friday (8th Feb). Spitfire, Master brew, Bishops Finger and the seasonal Porter were on offer to wet the whistle. Prices are not the cheapest youíll come across, but what does that matter when in such tranquil and in this day and age, such refreshingly traditional surroundings? I recommend a stop.

10 Feb 2008 18:07

The Roseneath, Gillingham

Another pub in Gillingham closes then. I sadly never got round to visiting The Roseneath.

Of the several local pubs in the area I've visited of late, I'm scratching my head as to which of them actually inhabited life as we know it. It may perhaps be the latest to close, but it certainly won't be the last.

29 Jan 2008 12:59

The Rose, Dartford

Situated next to a Wicks DIY store, The Rose is one for the locals certainly, but friendly enough on my evening visit last Monday (20th Jan). Famed by (former Landlord), darts ace Andy Forman, it was not surprising that a couple of dartboards featured. In fact, the several conversations I over heard all seemed to be relate to the sport. A couple of pool tables were present, in an otherwise, rather bare pub. There is however, a large enough beer garden and patio. Two ales were pleasingly on offer, Deuchers IPA and a guest. Not an outstanding pub by any means, yet one that serves its regulars well.

25 Jan 2008 13:12

The Opera Tavern, Covent Garden

Situated next to the Duchess Theatre (currently showcasing the excellent 'Buddy' musical), The Opera Tavern is a small, comfortable and altogether charming Nicholson's establishment serving the thirsty pre-show hoards. Up the steep little staircase, you'll also find a little restaurant area for those who like to dine in intimate surroundings. Amongst the usual keg offerings, well conditioned tasty ales were available, Landlord and Black Sheep amongst the more familiar London Pride. Al in all, this is a nice little pub and perfect for a drink before being suitably entertained next door. I somehow doubt last Friday (18th Jan) will end up being my sole visit.

23 Jan 2008 13:47

The Guy Earl of Warwick, Welling

Out of sheer curiosity, I re-visited The Guy Earl Of Warwick last Thursday (17th Jan) whilst in the area. I had paid a couple of visits when I briefly lived in Welling a few years back (note earlier review) and although nothing spectacular, I didnít have a problem with the place. It was a little ragged; a bit of a Ďladsí hangout, yet England beat Iceland 6-0 on my first visit here.

So, how was it? DEAD. Itís been refurbished, there are two plasma screens and a few tables, darts board and err, and thatís about it. I honestly couldnít believe just how bare the place is. Its been completely gutted and any life this pub may of once had, has gone. I know it wasnít a weekend night, but still. There were maybe five or so Ďregularsí within and the least said about them and their vernacular skills, the better. Courage Best was the solitary ale on offer, though whoíd choose to drink it in here is anyoneís guess. This is a lager pub with a capital L. This is a boozer worth bypassing.

20 Jan 2008 16:57

Lord Hood, Greenwich

I paid a visit here to The Lord Hood last Sunday (13th Jan), prior to attending another excellent night at the Up the Creek comedy club next door. Itís a run-down; though tidy enough localís pub which serves up jazz music from time to time Adding to the pubs detail, were, a pool table, an open area (presumably for the band?), pictures of Ships and, like so many pubs post since last July, candle lit tables. Why is this? Are they supposed to replace ashtrays? Beer selection was minimal, though the only ale, Courage Best, was tasty enough. It isnít cheap here though. Swearing, cackling clientele was plentiful, yet the atmosphere was tolerable. The background music (thankfully, not jazz) was decent enough, though this definitely isnít a pub to look out for.

16 Jan 2008 18:55

The Gate Clock, Greenwich

I paid a visit here to The Lord Hood last Sunday (13th Jan), prior to attending another excellent night at the Up the Creek comedy club next door. Itís a run-down; though tidy enough localís pub which serves up jazz music from time to time Adding to the pubs detail, were, a pool table, an open area (presumably for the band?), pictures of Ships and, like so many pubs post since last July, candle lit tables. Why is this? Are they supposed to replace ashtrays? Beer selection was minimal, though the only ale, Courage Best, was tasty enough. It isnít cheap here though. Swearing, cackling clientele was plentiful, yet the atmosphere was tolerable. The background music (thankfully, not jazz) was decent enough, though this definitely isnít a pub to look out for.

16 Jan 2008 18:55

The Tom Foolery, Bromley

A Fullers pub which has won several awards (a fact attested by the plaques by the entrance); I sadly left The Tom Foolery disappointed on my visit last Saturday (12th Jan). The beers, as anticipated, were top notch and my first pint of Discovery in five months, was washed down my gullet with most ease. However, strip the goodness of the ales away, and you are left with a rather bare, dull and in my opinion, incredibly boring pub. Beers are not everything. The background dross served up cunningly as Ďmusicí, insulted my ears and whilst those within seemed content enough, I wasnít. Fullers have seemingly decided to opt for all things contemporary and trendy and whilst such establishments have their place, they couldíve at least made a good stab at it. I was looking forward to my visit last Saturday (12th Jan). Iíll give it a 6 for the Discovery, but this bar unfortunately gets given the Ďmust try harderí tag by this reviewer.

16 Jan 2008 18:29

The Richmal Crompton, Bromley

Situated opposite Bromley South train station, The Richard Compton is a large Lloyds No 1, yet in places, has more of a regular Wetherspoon feel to it. With heaters, tables and chairs etc, the patio entrance is smoker-friendly. Interior is everything you'd expect, yet the middle section (by the long bar) seemed recently refurbished to me. There is a 'family area' situated towards the rear of the pub. There were plentiful ales on offer, including several guests, though, as in an unadventurous mood, opted for my beloved Guinness. The staff were friendly and attentive enough. All in all, I found my experience in here last Saturday (12th Jan) to be pleasant enough. Here is most definitely not quite how some here make out. IE, a complete dump.

16 Jan 2008 15:27

O'Neills, Bromley

A pub that rightly (in some cases) gets a bad rap from many, yet its okay at other times. I was in here for a short while last Saturday (Jan 12th), propped up at the bar watching Man Utd give Newcastle a damn good thrashing. The big screen was clear, behaviour was acceptable and my Guinness read went down nicely. Choose your time wisely and dare I say it, O'Neil's has some plus points!

15 Jan 2008 10:32

The Jolly Miller, Bexleyheath

Situated just away from the busy High St and a short stroll past the local Police Station, The Jolly Miller is a tidy enough basic localís pub, serving their regulars well. A plasma screen, china plates on the wall and other assorted trinkets were all that grabbed my eye visually. Pleasingly, ales were on offer. A guest, (Black Sheep?), London Pride and Speckled Hen were on offer on my visit last Sunday (6th Jan) and the latter was served just right. The girl behind the bar was smiley and this is seemingly both a child and dog friendly pub. The dog was well behaved. There is a comfortable enough beer patio for the smokers and the summer months and a small, though be it, sectioned off, garden. I quite liked it in here.

9 Jan 2008 22:35

The Sussex, Covent Garden

A quite touristy pub situated in the most bustling of areas, The Sussex is one of many pubs in the area, which is fairly simple to sum up. Dark, bare, dimly lit interior, functional, yet altogether lacking enough to elevate itself amongst the hefty competition. If anything, itís an okay enough joint serving a purpose, at least. Its Cask Marquee accreted and with that, you can expect some tasty ale on offer. Indeed, my two pints of Spitfire passed the taste test. Other ales on offer included IPA and Bombardier. The background music was inoffensive and the crowd within were not too boisterous and were well behaved. If you are looking for anything special, I wouldnít bother, though I found it to be decent enough last night (29th Dec) all the same.

30 Dec 2007 17:22

The Marquess of Anglesey, Covent Garden

Situated in Covent Garden, The Marquis of Anglesey is an upmarket, slightly trendy Youngís establishment. The neat interior, rubber stamped fittings and living room style seating style seating undoubtedly sits well with the masses and I have to admit, I was comfortable enough on my visit yesterday evening (29th Dec). The roaring fire was most definitely welcome. Clientele were on the modern side and most definitely not local. In fact I doubt this is a pub which ever has a specific regular crowd. The beers on offer were pricey, though both the Winter Warmer and Special were served in decent nick. This isnít a spectacular pub by any means, buy yes, its decent enough and worth swinging by if in the area.

30 Dec 2007 16:51

The Lemon Tree, Covent Garden

An enticing looking little pub from the outside and indeed, comfortable enough within, The Lemon Tree does tick some of the right initial boxes, but really isnít a place Iíll be rushing back. It didnít quite work for me. The only ale on offer was Youngís Bitter, though it tasted delicious and the girls behind the bar were professional and friendly enough. Up the rickety staircase and youíll find yourself in a little room with some additional seating. With the movie posters and student-style conversation amongst those seated, it did sadly have the feel of a sixth-form common room on my visit last night (29th Dec). Thai food is a speciality here, but Iím not such a fan of that either to be honest.

30 Dec 2007 16:34

Goodman's Field, Whitechapel

Slightly off the beaten track, The Goodmanís Field is a modern-style Wetherspoon and has rather an anonymous feel to it. The altogether, plain, bare interior and lack of personality, makes it a rather mundane place to settle for a drink or bite to eat. On my visit yesterday afternoon (29th Dec) there were only four ales on (Abbot, IPA, some ĎChristmas brew and good old London Pride), though the latter was served in (predictably for the chain, of course) decent condition. Undoubtedly, this bar serves the local working population well and Iím sure itís functional in that respect, but this is most definitely not a place to make a specific trip too.

30 Dec 2007 16:21

The Ivory Lounge, Bexleyheath

Goodbye to The Rat and Parrot, hello to The Ivory Lounge. Yes, itís arrived, another modernised Ďtrendyí bar for the Bexleyheath masses. I paid a visit last Friday (21st Dec) to check out the latest occupant of number 167 Broadway. Before entering for the first time, expect to be asked to provide ID, in order for your photo to be onto their computer system. A good idea in so many ways, yet one which tells you everything you need to know about the type of customer they anticipate. Now, the bar itself. The changes are quite dramatic. Before the change, it was all rather open and bare. Under new ownership however, things have changed. The bar is split into three sections. The first, with pine flooring, has a coffee house feel to it. You could almost be in a Starbucks or Costa Coffee and with the coffee machines and left over cakes and buns on display, this section, is evidently the bars priority during the afternoon hours. In the evening, it seemed to have more of a chill out vibe. Further on is a narrower section with a long bar to the right and a giant mirror to the left, with chairs and tables tucked all around. The third and final section is where the DJ has his booth and thereís a small-ish dance floor. There are now two sets of toilets at either end of this establishment. Drink selection is standard, though Peroni on draught is perhaps a rarity. It isnít particularly cheap, watch out for measurements and donít drink the Heineken. It was off. Music was decent enough. I was glad Ríníb wasnít given too much attention. Instead it was a mix of commercial dance and modern pop. Not really my thing, but it couldíve been worse. The staff were attentive enough and bouncers seemed reasonable enough in regard to letting smokers out to poison themselves. Some will love it here (my girlfriend did), others will hate it and then youíll find people like me, completely indifferent to the whole experience. Everything considered though, I guess I recommend it.

26 Dec 2007 14:20

Goose, Brixton

Oh my goodness, do bars as bad as this really exist? Iím still scratching my head. The Goose is a huge barn of a place with absolutely no redeeming qualities. Itís bare, dull, tatty and just completely lacking. Cross your legs. Do not visit the toilets and just what the hell was that stench? The service was equally atrocious. After waiting for ten minutes, expect the staff to struggle to pour your pint, then get told there is ďproblems with the gasĒ, before pouring you an alternative pint that is either watery or with a huge frothy head. Yikes. It is cheap, but please, take the advice from someone who genuinely enjoys pubs and dishing out advice, donít visit. One more time, donít visit. Wednesday (12th Dec) was a grey day in terms of pubs for this reviewer.

16 Dec 2007 12:13

The Beehive, Brixton

From the outside and indeed, upon entering, The Beehive seems like any other old-style Wetherspoon. The usual furnishing, groups huddled together and ales on offer breath an air of familiarity. However, thatís where the similarities end. Notices for CCTV adorns the walls and as for the gents? Well, now there is a story. There is none of the usual advertisements within and the two cubicles have low metal doors. The kind you can peer your head over Ė not particularly reassuring! The beer selection was reasonable and my Spitfire tasted fine, but I most definitely couldnít settle here. I visited last Wednesday (12th Dec) prior to a gig at the nearby Academy and whilst I can perhaps envisage supping a couple here beforehand again, I certainly donít relish a return visit.

16 Dec 2007 11:57

Bar Mondo, Dartford

I walked in here a couple of months or so back and everyone inside was dreesed as if out of a Marvel or DC comic!

Not a place I have any real desire to check out, but maybe sometime if, err... desperate!

11 Dec 2007 10:18

The Amersham Arms, New Cross

Friday evening (7th Dec) and a visit to New Cross for the first time found this reviewer in the rather modern Amersham Arms. Undoubtedly recently refurbished, I found the pub to have warmth and character. The darkly lit interior and cosiness sat well with me. It was bustling (seemingly mainly, though be it, well behaved student types) and the atmosphere was one of relaxed enjoyment. Drink selection was a little mainstream, though it was nice to have a pint of Red Stripe. Prices seemed reasonable enough and the staff were attentive, though service slightly slow. Background music was at a decent volume, and the selection was fine to my ears. A smart and appealing pub, Iíd certainly visit again.

9 Dec 2007 13:11

The Falcon Inn, Gillingham

Oh dear, I visited The Falcon Inn. Why? Because I enjoy reviewing, but every now and then, I enter a pub that makes it a truly miserable experience. Interior was basic, with a kind of mock Tudor set-up. Ripped wallpaper, an ancient TV for god knows what, a fruit machine and an empty space where a dartboard once hung. A couple of stooges were sat at the bar adding to the lifelessness. Again, like in the previous pub visited on this most downbeat of Tuesday afternoons (4th Dec) the barmaid was friendly and actually, my Bombardier (yes, they do an ale. Hooray) tasted okay. Thatís not enough though. Whilst I do fear for local pubs up and down our pleasant land, it is hard to justify them being kept open when they are as bad as The Falcon Inn.

9 Dec 2007 11:52

The Black Lion, Gillingham

Unlike the leisure centre opposite, of which this pub shares its names, it is quite unlikely youíll leave The Black Lion feeling any better about yourself. A scruffy, run-down establishment, with few redeeming qualities, it is surprising how a pub like this remains in operation. On my visit last Tuesday afternoon (4th Dec) there were a grand total of 3 customers (including yours truly) in an atmosphere that can only be described as dead. I knew it wouldnít exactly be bustling, but I was a little knocked back by it. Drink selection was fairly minimal with Courage Best (though only £1.60) being the only ale. I opted for Guinness and thatís where the comedy begins. It must have took the barmaid a good 5 minutes to get to grips with it and the result was myself sitting at a table and her bringing it over. To make sure further calamities didnít ensue, she even started pouring the follow up before Iíd finished it! A couple of school kids entered the pub shortly after and that was when I really wanted to leave. I noticed there is a room with a pool table to the back of the pub and a beer garden as well, but honestly, I wonít be checking it out! The singular quality this pub possesses is the fact that the staff seemed friendly. I wouldnít visit.

9 Dec 2007 11:24

The Millers Arms, Bexley

I paid a couple of visits here to The Millers Arms during the short summer spell we had earlier this year. I found it to be a tatty, localís affair with bare wooden flooring and not a lot to say for itself. There is an outdoors patio which no doubt has been getting full usage since the smoking ban. My visits took place on weekend nights, when a DJ would be playing the usual rubbish and the regulars, young, old and the damn right too old, would be cluttered together whilst jiggling to the beat. I wouldnít bother.

5 Dec 2007 22:05

The Phoenix, Dartford

Well, what do we have here in Dartford then? A proper bikerís pub, thatís what! I had no idea The Phoenix existed prior to a rather late evening visit last Friday (30th Nov) and whilst I cannot envisage another visit, the nosey bugger in me reared its head and I am glad I checked it out. Inside, itís rather dull, with a pool table and a conservatory at the back. I didnít notice any ale, so drank Stella. The regulars were grizzly and leather clad. Background music included The Who and Nirvana. Anything else worth adding? Not really. Visit if youíre the curious type, otherwise stay clear. Itís undoubtedly vital to the biking community, but canít see it suiting the average Joe.

4 Dec 2007 18:45

The Engineers Mate, Gillingham

Formerly known as The Viscount Harding, The Engineers Mate is situated at one end of the High St and is most definitely one for the locals. Itís fairly large and quite dark inside, with bare wooden flooring and large open spacing. Tables and chairs are not particularly well arranged and it caters for those who like drum Ďn bass on a weekend night. The regulars seemed to be a mix of the odd and slightly intimidating. Courage Best was the only ale on offer and so, it was a rather flat pint of Kronenbourg for this reviewer. I have to say that £2.99 is a disgusting price to pay for after all, what is only a bog standard beer. There is a raised area at the back with a pool table and there was a scattering of small TVís showing music videos. Iím sure here suites some, but not me. (Monday 26th Nov) could well prove to be my one solitary visit.

28 Nov 2007 12:02

The United Services, Gillingham

The United Services is a lovingly run friendly, locals Shepherd Neame pub situated just away from the local High St. I paid an afternoon visit on Monday (26th Nov) and was made to feel most welcome. Masterbrew and Spitfire were the ales on offer to my recollection and the latter (priced £2.50) was served just right. Itís a small pub and the overall layout added to the cosiness. A jukebox, pool table, plasma screen and a Deal or No Deal fruit machine was the entertainment on offer. There was also a beer garden, though it wasnít explored on this occasion. 8 out of 10.

28 Nov 2007 11:50

The Furze Wren, Bexleyheath

I have already commented on this pubs changed from a Lloyds No 1 to a regular Wetherspoon on its old page, yet since The Furze Wren now has a new one of its own, I feel its right to add my comments on the changes here.

In its previous guise, it was an okay enough bar on the whole, though be it troublesome at times. I never had any real major gripes (as plenty of others seemingly did), but must reiterate my opinion that the improvements are vast. The layout is a lot more friendly, the place is clean, tidy and well run at most times. The beer selection is much improved and there is a more varied crowd than before. The lack of music and more homely approach has seen to the demise of the 'younger crowd' within and as a result, it should appeal to the more mature drinker as well as more youthful patrons wishing for a peaceful bite to eat and drink. I recommend a stop here.

27 Nov 2007 13:37

The Crown, Blackheath

More to my liking than the ĎIrish themedí pub opposite, The Crown is a little more tuned to my traditionalist tastes, yet still falls a little short of my initial expectations. Several ales were on offer and my London Pride was served in good nick (though a short-measured), but the feel of the pub just didnít quite sit right with this reviewer. It was homely, yet somewhat lacking. I only stayed for one and just didnít fancy another. I wouldnít deter anyone from paying a visit and last Thursdays visit (8th Nov) may not be my last, but I wonít be rushing back.

11 Nov 2007 12:50

O'Neills, Blackheath

This past Thursday (8th Nov) was my first visit here, to OíNeilís in Blackheath since I had the misfortune of watching Englandís defeat to France at the start of Euro 2004. I had no real recollection of what the pub was actually like and I must confess that this recent visit was mainly prompted by my desire to sample the new Guinness Red (less heavy and sweeter than the original). Anyway, onto the actual pub. Interior is dull and not dissimilar to any other member of this chain and the grub on offer looked standard. Drink selection at least included the above-mentioned Guinness and pleasingly, an unexpected couple of ales. Staff were okay, except for the fact the scouse barmaid who started pouring my pint and then forgot about it! Background music is something to gripe about. Razorlight and err, Razorlight was all I picked up on. Clientele seem more Ďchaví than in neighbouring establishments and one found that another gripe. To summarise Ė its okay for a pint, but really, there are better pubs. 6 out of 10.

11 Nov 2007 12:28

The Ship Inn, Rochester

The barman serves up good 'blow-job' in here!

Err, no, not that kind! A tasty shot indeed.

6 Nov 2007 10:13

The London Stone, Cannon Street

Ah, the Ďspooky pubí. Not particularly spooky to be honest, though being there for a fancy dressed Halloween party last Saturday evening (Oct 27th); my fellow partygoerís attire at least befitted a pub with such a theme. Otherwise, the odd cobweb doesnít quite cut it. The bookcase toilets entrance is cool though. Drink selection is crap and expensive (though the Ďtest tubeí shots) looked interesting. I had a really good night in all honesty, though that had little to do with the venue itself. Iíd recommend it for a themed party, otherwise I wouldnít bother. The London Stone isnít a great name either.

30 Oct 2007 19:07

The Crown, Eltham

Friday (26th Oct) My first visit to one of Elthamís most notorious boozers, The Crown sine the change in management and in fact, probably my first in over a couple of years. Nothing has changed. No ales (its supposedly a Green King pub), flat Stella, oddballs, blokes with tattooed necks, drunkards dancing and shouting (well, its supposedly karaoke) to Del Shannon. The toilets were an unbelievable state. Why did I visit? I donít know really.

29 Oct 2007 09:58

The Railway, Blackheath

Friday evening (Oct 26th) and one finds themselves in Blackheathís very own member of the railway pub group. Though, is it? No. Only in name, for you see, The Railway (though be it, nice enough) has nothing remotely railway like about it. As another reviewer pointed out, youíll probably find few commuters in here. What youíll find in here though, are the well-heeled Blackheath socialites, all looking as if theyíve stepped out of an expensive clothing catalogue. Both the young and the old, all seemed strangely alike. No workmen or labourers to be found in here. Anyway, tailing away from the clientele, the bar itself is well stocked. Several ales and a real cider were on offer (Youngís Bitter served in good nick) as well as some less familiar continental draft lagers. Dťcor was modern and everything was very well presented. It was all rather comfortable and clean. Background music was pleasing enough also. There is a terrace where you can have a smoke, though Iíll leave that to be checked out another time. It may not be my idea of a station pub, but I found The Railway in Blackheath to be a good enough establishment for this reviewer to rest his tired bones

29 Oct 2007 09:46

The George, Bexley Village

A tidy localís pub in the village of Bexley, I found The George is to be an overall satisfying watering-hole on my visit yesterday afternoon (Oct 23rd). Interior and decor leaved a little to be desired and a pool table and small plasma was about the only objects that caught my attention. The regulars seemed friendly enough and the girl serving was excellent. Itís a rarity to have a perfectly poured Guinness (in some places!), let alone having it bought to your table! No idea if Iíll visit again anytime soon, but I liked it here enough.

24 Oct 2007 18:39

The Metro Bar, Sidcup

I had intended to visit The Alma yesterday (Oct 23rd), but being the lazy sod that I am and The Metro Bar seemingly being the drinking establishment closest to the train station, I decided to check here out here instead. What I encountered was a rather dull and boring bar, with FM friendly rock and pop for entertainment. There were no attention-grabbing knickknacks of note and really nothing of interest within, whatsoever. It is all very, very bland. No ales on offer (unsurprisingly) and the Guinness (£2.80) tasted a little sour. I would say its okay for a swift one before boarding the train, but not a lot less. If anything, at least this bar is inoffensive.

24 Oct 2007 18:23

The Wrong 'Un, Bexleyheath

After a visit yesterday evening (Oct 18th), Iím pleased to upgrade my rating to a well deserved 7 out of 10 for Bexleyheathís The Wrong ĎUn. It certainly seemed a lot more appealing than previous experiences. It was busy, yet the service was prompt and with a smile. The curry was excellent and washed down with a well-conditioned pint of Pedigree. I still prefer its Welling equivalent, but oh yes, here is much improved.

19 Oct 2007 20:29

The Drayman, Bexleyheath

The Drayman in Bexleyheath, a bar that I have never even contemplated a visit to over the past few years, finally got my attention last night (18th Oct) and I can report that whilst here isnít quite truly awful, Iíll gladly never visit again. Iíll start with a positive however and that comes in the form of the patio leading into the venue. Large, covered, heated and a plasma screen makes it probably the most smoker-friendly establishment Iíve been to since the ban. Right, that over with, itís now time to get down to the grizzly business of the negatives! First up, Guinness. Donít drink it. I was informed the at the reason for it being off was because ďno one drinks it.Ē Bloody hell! My lager afterwards was better, but still flat. Prices were cheap though. The interior and dťcor is modern. Red and black leather sofas, nice tables and scented candles are the order of the day whilst the big projection screen shows the latest dance music videos. I imagine the volume level rises as the evening progresses, but I found it to be torturous enough at 7pm. The toilets were clean though. Shall I give here and extra point for that? Nah. To be honest, if youíre youngish (over 25ís remember!), with your mates etc, youíll have a laugh regardless of everything against it. I do bare things like that in mind. As for me though, hell will have to freeze over before I set foot in The Drayman again.

19 Oct 2007 12:36

The Westcourt Arms, Gillingham

Thank you for informing llculj. Another pub closes then. A sad trend thatíll continue I fear.

14 Oct 2007 21:43

Ha! Ha! Bar and Canteen, Victoria

Oh dear, I entered The Ha Ha! Bar and Canteen after work on Friday (5th Oct) not entirely certain as to whether Iíd be better of saving my money and checking out somewhere else. The negative reports this bar has received however, only made me more curious, either that or a sucker for punishment. Interior wise, yep, youíve guessed it, neon purple, modern lighting and dull furniture. To complete the mood, we had some kind of house music. Terrible. No ales on offer and this is when we get onto the subject of measurements. No word of a lie, my Ďpintí of Stella had the hugest head Iíd ever seen pulled which (as previously stated by another reviewer) quickly evaporates. I was then just left with a rather flat ĺ full glass of beer. When at he bar, I noticed others being ripped off and yet the worrying thing isÖ I really donít think they care. People should. Places like this are a monstrosity.

7 Oct 2007 13:34

Kings Arms, Victoria

What to make of The Kings Arms? Well, I paid a visit last Friday (5th Oct) and left a satisfied customer. The interior is rather rustic and homely and grabbing a section all to myself in the corner, I found the place to have a definite cosiness. I wish theyíd paint the yellow smoke-stained wallpaper though. Ales on offer included Youngís Bitter, London Pride and an expertly poured (at least it was for me!) Bombardier. Fellow clientele seemingly tend to be local workers and the odd tourist. To round things off, I would like to add that the jukebox was well stocked. Expect to here, rock, pop and classics from yesteryear. I donít think I could withstand a session in here, but a quick visit certainly wonít disappoint.

7 Oct 2007 13:12

The Railway Hotel, Dartford

Many a disgruntled smoker has been yapping on of late about how pubs suffer from the unpleasant whiff of bad BO since July 1st and yet, until a very recent visit to The Railway Hotel, had failed to notice it. Blimey was the stench potent in here! An air-freshener is most definitely required within and may I recommend a clothes-peg to anyone intending to pop in for a pint! Shame, as it feels a lot cleaner inside than before.

1 Oct 2007 14:08

The Westcourt Arms, Gillingham

Does this pub have funny opening hours? I intended to visit a couple of nights ago (Sept 24th) but it appeared to be closed. In fact, it appears to have no life around it every time I pass it. Itís a rather uninviting looking place from the outside, but I find that intriguing. What could possibly lie within? Iím sure this reviewer will find out someday!

26 Sep 2007 12:51

The Canterbury Tales, Gillingham

Probably the most boring and least interesting pub I have visited in a long time, The Canterbury Tales is strictly for the locals only. Dull cream walls, a pool table and a bland looking fireplace were the only objects that grabbed my attention. Music blaring from the speakers included Take That and errÖ Billy Connolly and his banjo. I wasnít amused. There were a total of 6 people (including myself) in here and that only added to my misery. On the plus side, the lady behind the bar was very friendly and they had Bombardier and a guest for the ale drinkers. My visit a couple of nights ago (Sept 24th) was admittedly my first, so maybe it does pick up at other times, but really, I doubt it very much. Gillingham needs help.

26 Sep 2007 12:44

The Henry Holland, Marylebone

I really am a little bemused by the positive reviews this pub has received. I paid a visit here to the Henry Holland yesterday afternoon with my girlfriend (5th Sept) and encountered a rather gloomy and uninspiring place to settle. The atmosphere was welcoming enough, the staff were friendly and I liked the background music (Nirvana, Stone Roses) but if ever a pub was in dire need of a lick of paint and a good clean, its here. Iím no fan of modernised trendy establishments and like nothing better than to be in laid back old-style boozers, but I do prefer environments where one doesnít feel in need of a wash when leaving. Okay, on to the beers. The usual lagers were available and the ale was London Pride. Not the best Iíve ever tasted the glass was dirty too. Iím aware Iíve only paid the solitary visit and Iíll give here another go one day, but based on my visit, it has to be a lowly 4 out of 10. I hope things improve.

16 Sep 2007 17:02

The Rat and Parrot, Bexleyheath

Well thatís a shame. I always looked forward to my yearly visit! It was just never busy enough, that was the problem and I have no doubt that if another bar is its replacement, itíll suffer the same fate. Either that or one of the other many bars will run out of luck. Seriously, Bexleyheath should just leave the Ďyoungster hangoutsí alone now.

11 Sep 2007 18:23

The Porcupine, Leicester Square

Handily situated next to the tube station, The Porcupine is an okay enough pub to pop in for a quick one. I should emphasise the phrase Ďquick oneí as after a few here on Friday evening (Sept 7th) I have reached the conclusion that here is a little dull to warrant too much time inside. Ales were pleasingly on offer though and The London Pride passed the taste test (though it wasnít wonderful). Interior wise its quite bland and woody. I didnít pick up on a lot of character and itís not an establishment Iíll be rushing back too. A swift one? Yes. A session? No thanks!

9 Sep 2007 17:06

The Barrowboy and Banker, London Bridge

Last Friday (Sept 7th) was my first visit to The Barrow Boy and Banker in a good few years. It was a pub I very occasionally frequented when working in the area and always having the feeling it was rather god, was looking forward to return visit. It didnít disappoint. Upon entering, the grandness of the building and the glorious interior is immediately striking. With cubbyholes to hide away in and open spaces too, itís a pub to please both large groups and the solitary drinker. The usual array of Fullers ales were on offer (London Pride £2.90) and were served in decent condition. Downstairs, the clientele was predominantly made up of suited office workers, yet upstairs was a little more varied. An elderly group were happily dining opposite me. (This is a Fullers pub very much geared towards eating). The only real drawback was the air conditioning. I sat in several spots (one for moving around!) and found it difficult to escape the chilled breeze. All in all however, this is a wonderful establishment worth checking out. It was actually quiet enough for a Friday evening too.

9 Sep 2007 16:56

The Slug and Lettuce, Bromley

Hmmm, and the purpose of this Slug and Lettuce is exactly? Well, I guess it could be used for a swift one before boarding a train next door. No, in all fairness, I didnít find there to be anything inherently wrong here on my visit yesterday afternoon (Sept 4th), though there is nothing to make it stand out and although I was only in here for the one, I felt a severe case of boredom brewing. There is nothing to look at aside from passing traffic and the atmosphere was completely dead. It was shoppers and the expected commuters for clientele and thatís probably the root of the problem. Standard lagers were on offer (Becks Vier, £2.90) and a seemingly decent stock of wines. Actually (and surprisingly) the background music was about the best thing going on my visit. Wonít be here again in the near future, but if really, really, really thirsty, I suppose popping in would be okay.

5 Sep 2007 19:28

The Partridge, Bromley

I have frequented the Walkabout bar several times over the past few years, but prior to yesterday afternoons all to brief visit (Sept 4th), had failed to notice The Partridge next door. It turns out that itís a wonderful bank conversion (evident enough once inside) under the Fullers brewery and unsurprisingly serving the usual array of excellent ales. I found it to be a most pleasant, light and airy establishment where one could easily pass the time. Clientele seemed to be mainly of the more mature and well behaved variety and was pleasingly un-Bromley like in that regard. There appeared to a beer patio or garden at the back of the pub which will have to be investigated at some point. The Partridge was a nice surprise.

5 Sep 2007 19:18

The Spanish Galleon, Greenwich

Sunday (Sept 2nd) was my first proper visit this excellent Shepherd Neame pub in quite along time. My previous visit was cut short due to the lack of seating and I was completely off my tits on my only other visitÖ whenever that actually was. Well, I was a little more sober this time and gladly so. The Spanish Galleon is a well looked after, comfortable enough pub, though perhaps slightly bare. Spitfire, Bishops Finger and Master brew were the well conditioned ales on offer, though prices are not particularly cheap. The background music was pleasingly easy on the ears and a definite calmness echoed around us. 7 out of 10 from me.

5 Sep 2007 19:09

The Rose Inn, Herne Bay

Well, what a bizarre little pub the Rose Inn is. Immediately enticing from the outside and indeed, quaint and delightful inside (though be it, pokey). This is a little Shepherd Neame pub fit for the locals and the just plain curios. Tattooed bruisers sat outside with their lady friends burping and farting whilst a little old lady sat calmly inside supping cherry and an odd-bod prompt up the bar with his wine. In a way, its clientele worked in its favour and made this reviewer's short stay that little more pleasant. Every good pub should have its characters and the patrons here certainly didnít disappoint on my visit. The only real pitiful was Master brew being the only ale.

29 Aug 2007 19:27

Saxon Shore, Herne Bay

Bank Holiday Monday and where does one find themselves? In a Wetherspoons! Though be it, one by the sea. I paid a visit to The Saxon Shore with my girlfriend last Monday (27th August) and wasnít particularly impressed by Herne Bayís member of this branch. The interior was dark and drab and not a place I think I could ever have settled. The outdoor beer patio was a little better, but still this leaded much to be desired. The clientele seemed to be a balanced mix of locals and tourists with the obligatory odd drunkard lurking about. The ale selection was quite poor. However, on a plus note, my chicken was tasty. Hmmm

29 Aug 2007 19:01

The Pilot Inn, North Greenwich

I visited the Pilot Inn yesterday afternoon (August 21st) with many friends prior to attending an excellent Rolling Stones concert at the nearby O2 arena. What a pub! Cosy and well furnished, I felt completely at ease inside and indeed outside this multi- levelled Fullers pub. The garden is most pleasant. Itís just a shame the weather was bleak. There was the usual range of ales on offer and the London Pride (£2.80) was served in decent condition. Iíll be here again next Sunday for the same reasons as yesterdays visit. In dull area made up of warehouses and err, the David Beckham Academy, the Pilot Inn is almost a little oasis. When visiting the O2, donít drink inside; visit this excellent little pub instead.

22 Aug 2007 12:51

Ye Three Lords, Aldgate

What a find! I was mightily impressed on my visit to Ye Three Lords last Thursday evening (16th Aug). Itís a stripped-down, basic, and no nonsense Youngís pub, which is well, unpretentious, down to earth and most definitely, rocking! There canít be too many pubs in the area where youíll here Smoke On The Water blaring from the jukebox. The Youngís Special was in champion condition and as I type, Iím really struggling to pick out any real faults. Err; I guess it would benefit from a bit of smoke. No seriously, this is an excellent little boozer (and it is rather small) and if, like me, you crave havens such, as this, then youíll be most definitely feel at home here. Pay a visit.

18 Aug 2007 12:03

The Malt Shovel, Dartford

I'm becoming a bit of a regular here now. Its an excellent liitle pub (see my review below) Just make sure you watch out for the barmaids who can't pour Guinness!

15 Aug 2007 13:39

The Hogshead, Tower Hill

Thursday evening (August 9th) was my first ever visit to a Slug and Lettuce, let alone this particular member of the branch. I had mixed expectation prior to the visit and this certainly wasnít reassured when upon entering, I was almost immediately pounced on by one of the (seemingly over eager, but really just in it for potential tips) bar staff. Whatís wrong with queuing at the bar only? I like to know when I want a pint and not to be informed suggestively thatís its time I need one. Okay, enough of the rant. The interior was actually to my liking. I liked the modernised feel and thought it was all rather comfortable. The beer selection was quite good; though watch out for the measurements. The music was a MOR, safe as houses affair and I suppose, familiarity and inoffensiveness is what you might crave after a hard day slugging away in the office. The toilets are a bit of a trek if near the entrance, but aside from these quibbles, I didnít find it to be too bad in here. I doubt id visit on a Friday (or in truth, any day anytime soon), but this Slug and Lettuce isnít a place Iíd deter people from going to. Itís not overly intrusive and is there if required. A 6/10 from me.

12 Aug 2007 13:18

The Minories, Tower Hill

My previous review for The Minories was unfavourable, but in truth, prior to last Thursdays visit (August 9th), I hadnít set foot in here for three years. So, would my recollections in my initial review prove to be the undoing this time around? Yes and no. The bar seemed to of had a refurbishment since and I donít recall, it, well, being so nicely done up inside. The large beer patio is accommodating and on the face of it, all the pluses should lead to a favourable rating. However, despite the half-decent beer selection, (London Pride and bombardier amongst the ales), the condition was err. Not so good. Mt pint of Pride tasted sour and the service on my visit wasnít particularly up to scratch either. All in all though, here isnít a bad place by any means and I now feel I was a little overly harsh on my previous review. Or perhaps it was because all my previous visits were on a Friday night. A time when drunken, suits stagger to awful music and offer you four pounds for a single cigarette (true! This really happened). Choose your time wisely and accordingly and youíll like it here. I think. I certainly wouldnít visit on a Friday night though.

12 Aug 2007 13:02

The Tap 'n' Tin, Chatham

Pete Doherty performed here last night!

12 Aug 2007 12:42

The Shakespeare, Victoria

Oh dear, what a miserable dump this place is! The Shakespeare is not a place Iíve ever thought to frequent before and I very, very much doubt Iíll be seen in here again. Just what is the appeal? They sell an ale or two and the background was music was pleasant, but honestly, either people go here because they are numskulls or purely because of its proximity to the station. The toilets, by the way, are the worst I have ever entered. The stench was beyond vile. A weaker man wouldíve vomited. Err, cleaning staff? Friday (3rd August) was my first and will forever be my sole visit to this travesty of a drinking establishment. Bulldozers, where are you?

6 Aug 2007 14:40

St. George's Tavern, Victoria

Friday after work (August 3rd) was my first visit here to the St Georges Tavern since its refurbishment a month or so back. The changes are impressive. Gone is the run-down spit and sawdust approach and in is the grand old city pub feel Ė with more beers to choose from to boot! Heineken and Amstel have been added to the regular lager choices and London Pride and Spitfire are now available amongst a few others for the ale fans. The pub is certainly now catering a lot more for the diners than before. The back of the pub is now solely for those who want a bite and this area has the feel of an old fashioned restaurant and all in all, looked fairly appealing. The smokers need not feel to upset either, as there is adequate outside seating though be prepared to stand when busy. I did fear this pub would go the wine bar route with leather sofas and chill-out music, but am glad that whilst this pub is perhaps aiming to entice a more varied clientele, its still not detached from the qualities it possessed before. It should be a pub for everyone and I think thatís what weíve got here.

6 Aug 2007 14:28

The Slug and Lettuce, Soho

I passed by here yesterday afternoon (July 28th) and something really hit me. Why on earth in such a vibrant and colourful area such as Soho, would anyone even contemplate visiting such a place as this? Completely baffling.

29 Jul 2007 12:24

The Frog And Toad, Gillingham

Hidden away down a backstreet and surrounded by terraced houses, The Frog and Toad is bit of a gem. Itís odd, but has a certain charm. The staff were friendly and hardworking in their efforts to please the regulars and the atmosphere was one of genuine community spirit. The beers were excellent and reasonably priced. The garden is quite nice and there is pleasingly at least some shelter for us smokers to have a puff. I liked it here on my visit last night (28th July) and would most definitely not be afraid to pay a return visit.

29 Jul 2007 11:37

The Monarch, Gillingham

Tatty, run-down and seemingly knackered, The Monarch is just another boozer that looks like itís on its last legs. The fact that itís a Shepherd Neame establishment doesnít mean jack when youíre amongst such miserable interior. I was in here last night (July 28th) and sure, the staff were friendly, clientele in jovial spirits, but there was a black cloud hanging over my stay in here last night and Iím not blaming Chas and Dave who were blaring from the speakers!

29 Jul 2007 11:29

The Ship, Soho

Ah, The Ship Inn is not your bog standard back-street boozer. I paid a visit yesterday afternoon (28th July) and was suitably impressed. The interior is basic, but homely and the clientele a mix of the old and young. The Fullers beers I didnít sample, but my Grolsch was cold enough, if slightly pricey. Staff were of the punk variety and I was mightily impressed with the vast CD collection behind the bar. Music was most certainly rocking. If Keith Moon was a regular, then itís good enough for me.

29 Jul 2007 11:14

The Sherlock Holmes, Charing Cross

An interesting and altogether very touristy pub situated just across the road from Trafalgar Square, I was content enough in The Sherlock Holmes yesterday afternoon (28th July). My pint of Speckled Hen tasted okay and the staff were friendly and attentive. Whether I could withstand a session here, I donít know, but its worth popping in if passing by.

29 Jul 2007 11:07

The Woodman, Bexleyheath

Situated a short walk from the excellent Prince Albert, The Woodman is a tatty, menacing and not too enjoyable pub to settle for a drink or two. I was in here last night with my girlfriend and both us agreed that itís up there with the worst of them. The clientele were rough and ready workmen types with limited conversation and the least said about the beer patio, the better. My Guinness tasted okay though. Hmmm, is that enough? Err, no. Most definitely not recommended.

27 Jul 2007 11:20

The Britton Farm House, Gillingham

I paid a visit here to The Britton Farm House yesterday afternoon (July 16th) and found I had entered rather gloomy and characterless excuse for a pub. The regulars seemed friendly enough, as was the landlord, but there is absolutely nothing about the place to entice me into a return visit. There is a jukebox, and the interior is neat and tidy, but it was just completely lacking. Maybe only having two lagers on offer (and one of them not actually being available) didnít help.

17 Jul 2007 11:15

The Fine Line, Monument

A bar never frequented by me whilst working nearby, The Fine Line is a bland and incredibly boring place to have a drink. The music playing in the background on my visit last Friday (July 6th) was, to be frank, torturous. I felt like I was in a Pret A Manger. The clientele generally tends to be made up of local office workers who like to bring their Ďworkí to the pub and as for the interior and dťcor? Need I bother? Iíd rather drink Special Brew with the vagrants around London Bridge station than be seen in here again.

8 Jul 2007 12:29

The Prince Albert, Bexleyheath

For me, this is an historic old watering hole, as last night at 11:55pm, this reviewer sparked up his last Benson and Hedges inside an English pub.

On a side note, I should add that after over hearing a conversation between a regular and the landlord, ĎBení is still there and although already reviewed and rated, I must reiterate my opinion that this is the finest boozer in Bexleyheath and probably all the surrounding areas. Well worth a visit.

1 Jul 2007 23:25

St Christopher's Inn, Greenwich

The third and final pub visited last night in historic Greenwich (June 23rd), The St Christopherís Inn is situated next to the train station which pleased this reviewer no end as he was rather tiered towards the end of the evening. I quite liked this pub, though found it to be nothing special either. There was a certain tackiness to the interior and all in all, it stank of blandness and limited imagination. Selection was reasonable I suppose, though I stuck to my tried and trusted Guinness and prices were reasonable enough. The music that kicked in towards the end of the night was decent. A mix of classic pop, a little rock (thank you DJ for fulfilling my Jumpiní Jack Flash request) and todayís crop went down nicely with me. So, this maybe a pub for a swift half before heading home or perhaps a Saturday night session, yet it was lacking something to elevate it above the two pubs that preceded my visit here. A solid 7 rating from me.

24 Jun 2007 14:31

The Lost Hour, Greenwich

A students and youngsters hang-out, The Auctioneer is a lively bar a short walk from the train station and if a youthful crowd, pool and indie tunes are your bag, then you may find here appealing. I was here last night (23rd June) and quite liked it. The interior is absolutely nothing special at all, and its not a place for the ale buffs, but it worked for me. Prices were reasonable enough and the service was okay and with a smile. Despite being busy, it wasnít uncomfortable either. Iím not too sure about Greenwich itself, but there are definitely worse places for the 20-something crowd to go.

24 Jun 2007 14:12

The Mitre, Greenwich

I paid a visit here to The Mitre last night (23rd June) and found it to be a warm, welcoming and pleasant enough place to have a drink or two. Selection was reasonable with ales on offer amongst the usual lagers and there was certain grandeur to the interior. People may disagree with me there! Anyway, the toilets are at the bottom of a steep spiral staircase, so try and avoid when tipsy. There is a conservatory towards the back of the pub and a beer patio hat didnít get examined due to the rain. I liked this pub and a return visit is definitely warranted.

24 Jun 2007 14:09

The Rat and Parrot, Bexleyheath

Last nights visit (16th June) was my first to The Rat and Parrot for probably around a year and it certainly seems like longer since Iíve been on a Saturday night. Iíve never had a major problem with this pub and have always enjoyed myself. It was certainly less busy than I remembered it did alter the atmosphere as the evening progressed. The barmaid told me it was due to the Amadeus bus, yet I think the ever-increasing number of music bars in the area is more of a factor. The bouncers here are seemingly friendlier than in some other establishments, though the bulletproof vests are obviously a worry. All in all though, I certainly find here more appealing than Affinity etc. One more thing. As others here have clearly stated, if you donít like the venue, than donít go. Some reviewers here seem to constantly repeat themselves unnecessarily in regards to their seemingly intense dislike for what happens to be in my opinion, a decent enough place for a gathering.

17 Jun 2007 15:09

The Montagu Pyke, Charing Cross Road

Bland, dull, but very cheap, The Montague Pike isnít any different to any other Lloyds No. 1 in most ways, though this one is absolutely huge. I paid a visit last Thursday evening (14th June) and was a little knocked back by the sheer size. If you donít like these places, then here most certainly wonít alter your opinion, yet for those who donít mind them, youíll find here to be a little better than the usual town centre branches. There isnít a lot else to say really. Itís a Lloyds No. 1 after all. Oh, there is something like 15 different draught lagers available on tap.

17 Jun 2007 14:29

The Ship and Shovell, Charing Cross

Completely oblivious to its existence prior to last Thursdays visit (14th June), I feel strongly that I have found a quite delightful hidden gem of a pub in The Ship and Shovel. The interior was warm, cosy and wonderfully maintained. For a pub that obviously gets so much use, this is only something to be admired. There was a decent array of ales on offer although I stuck to Guinness. The clientele was unsurprisingly of the suited and booted variety, though I didnít feel out of pace in my jeans and t-shirt. The pub is uniquely split in two sections with a non-smoking section across the road, although obviously there wonít be anything too different about it come July 1st. This is a pleasant and lovingly looked after pub which I have to say is a must visit.

17 Jun 2007 14:17

Lloyds No. 1, Bexleyheath

I forgot to mention in my last comment that this pub is in fact no longer a Lloyds No 1, but in fact a regular Wetherspoon. Itís still clean, and tidy, yet as miserable as hell. Itís been literary almost empty on every visit Iíve made. I can understand the reasoning behind the refurbishment and changes with all the trouble they had here in the past, but something needs to be done. This is a large pub, which should have a vibrant atmosphere and a buzz about it, but itís just a tragic case right now. Hopefully things will pick up come July 1st when they may get some of their perhaps older and less immature custom back.

8 Jun 2007 13:15

The Red Barn, Barnehurst

A station pub of sorts and the only drinking establishment in Barnehurst, The Red Barn bares all the traits of a real local. The groups that assemble inside are primarily Ďladsí and the banter, basic. The atmosphere was just a little off, both inside the pub and in the spacious, outside sections. Drink selection was okay, with London Pride and Youngís providing the sensible drinker with an alternative to Stella and the Ďonly 1 pound extraí double vodka and mixer. Perhaps, Iím being a little too harsh here, there were after all, no major problems on my visit last night (2nd June) and I had a pleasant enough evening. I just donít think youíll ever catch me in here again, thatís all.

3 Jun 2007 12:37

The Walrus and Carpenter, Monument

I used to work just round the corner from The Walrus and Carpenter, yet until last nights visit, (31st May), Iíd only paid a solitary brief visit. I found it to be quite a decent little pub. The layout is a little unusual, yet the feel is a good one. There was a decent array of beers on offer and everyone seemed jovial spirits. Bearing in mind its close proximity to office after office, it can and will get packed out with suits, both inside and in fact spilling out on to the pavement, but it in fact dies down somewhat as the evening progresses. There isnít really a lot else to say. Itís certainly preferable to dross like the All Bar One a short walk ahead.

1 Jun 2007 23:41

St. George's Tavern, Victoria

The St Georges Tavern is currently closed for refurbishment. Hereís hoping they do it up really nice for us smokers whoíll be feeling a little more miserable than usual come July 1st!

30 May 2007 22:44

The Crown, Eltham

For those who are unaware, The Crown is reportedly under new ownership. I havenít ventured here in an absolute age and cannot envisage myself doing so again anytime soon. Whether the changes will be positive I do not know. As the age old saying goes, you cannot polish a turd.

28 May 2007 16:52

Play, Bexleyheath

Bexleyheath isnít exactly short of late night bars/clubs, yet another one has sprouted up called Play. Situated in the old snooker club along the Broadway, itís a tidy enough, cheap enough venue for a late night drink, yet was distinctively lacking anything like an atmosphere on my visit earlier this month. The music playing was a mix of the usual pop and dance and was altogether not to different to all the nearby competition in that respect. We stayed for perhaps a couple of hours and unsurprisingly it never picked up. There are just too many venues in the area and as a result, here will suffer. This is an okay venue, but if you are a regular frequenter of this kind pf place already, you wonít find anything too different here. I honestly wouldnít like to predict Playís life expectancy.

26 May 2007 12:33

The Brewmaster, Leicester Square

Situated just opposite Leicester Square, The Brewmaster is a tourist-filled, two-floored, slightly scruffy pub with slight traces of character. I paid a visit last Friday evening (May 18th) and whilst it is perhaps a little bland, it obviously suites many. Prices are dear of course, but so is practically everywhere in the area. The barmaid was friendly, yet every pint of Guinness I ordered came with a half-pint head. That wasnít quite the case of course, yet top-upís may be required on a visit here. Iím not entirely sure about the name ĎBrewmasterí either. I only noticed a couple of ales on the second floor. Maybe there is a better selection downstairs. This certainly isnít a bad pub and everyone seemed jolly enough, I was just a little disappointed.

20 May 2007 13:32

The North Foreland, Rochester

The North Foreland is a comfortable and tidy enough locals pub, but was let down on my visit last night (11th May) by the rowdy customers. I and my friend just found it a little hard to settle. The standard lagers were on offer and priced appropriately for the area though and I did notice an ale or two. The background music was pleasant enough. Maybe itís okay for an afternoon beer, but is perhaps best avoided on a Friday or Saturday night.

12 May 2007 12:38

All Bar One, Charing Cross

This is a place that will suite many, but will send others away screaming. I paid a visit here to the Ha Ha Bar & Canteen last Thursday (10th May) and have to say that it was very much equal to my not so high expectations. Personally, I donít mind modernised bars, so long as they get the basics right, but like so many others I have visited, this place just doesnít quite cut it. The service was atrocious, my pint wasnít quite a pint and I was asked by some weirdo to watch their bag whilst they go in search of ďhashĒ. Expect a mix of the usual suited and booted brigade supping wine and indiscreetly fiddling with their Blackberries as well as trendy student types and foreigners. The music was pleasant however. Oh well, I suppose thatís something.

12 May 2007 12:19

The Ship, Tower Hill

Quite an odd pub this, it didnít have the feel of a central London boozer, though that certainly isnít a bad thing. I popped in The Ship when in the area yesterday (May 1st) to find quite a plainly decorated and perhaps even slightly shabby establishment. Staff were friendly however and the ales were in fine condition. One thing to be weary of is the spiral staircase leading to the gents. My, are they steep! Just make sure you hold on or even better, just have a couple. Donít get pissed!

2 May 2007 18:02

The Hung, Drawn and Quartered, Tower Hill

A place I used to bypass when working nearby, I found The Hung Drawn and Quartered to be a lovely pub on my visit yesterday (May 1st). As others have noted, the appearance on the outside does indeed suggest something bigger then you actually get inside. The pub is actually quite quaint and makes for a lovely drinking spot. There was the usual range of Fullers beers on offer and the condition of the London Pride and Indian Pale Ale was superb. Expect the usual mix of suited and booted office types and Iíd imagine it can get pretty crammed on a Friday after 5, yet this is a very acceptable place to whittle away time with a paper or good company. The decor is quite grand also. Well worth a visit.

2 May 2007 17:56

The Burnt Oak, Gillingham

I must stop recommending closed pubs! I believe The Burnt Oak hasn't been with us for a while now.

1 May 2007 09:34

The Victory, Gillingham

This pub closed a few years ago and is now known as The Scruffy Duck.

22 Apr 2007 09:51

The Scruffy Duck, Gillingham

Formerly known as The Victory, The Scruffy Duck is friendly enough, down to earth locals pub situated just away from the high street. I paid a visit yesterday afternoon (April 21st) and was impressed enough. The pub is clean, tidy, well presented and the not a place where non-regulars are made to feel unwelcome. Ales on offer included Speckled Hen and the Ďspecialí was IPA Smooth at £1.50 a pint. All in all, this is quite an acceptable litter boozer; though watch out for the shocking lime colour walls on the way to the gents

22 Apr 2007 09:47

The Elusive Camel, Victoria

I popped in her with my girlfriend a few weeks back (30th April) and despite being a little worse for wear and maybe having clouded judgement after a few at the nearby Willow Walk, we still left immediately! I can understand that many go here because of the lack of these type of places in the Victoria area, but all you have to do is hop on a tube to find much better alternatives.

19 Apr 2007 14:55

The Maple Leaf, Covent Garden

Plastic, cheap and tacky is the only way to sum up this 'Canadian themed' bar. I paid a visit here to The Maple Leaf, with my girlfriend last Thursday evening (April 12th) and although I wasn't expecting much, this place still disappointed. The dťcor is appalling and the whole bar is rather untidy and run-down. There are screens scattered about showing what I presume was Canadian ice hockey, but aside from that and the one draught Canadian larger on offer, there was nothing to really link it with the country. I don't think a moose's head on the wall and fake wood beams really cuts it to be honest. Not particularly recommended.

16 Apr 2007 19:14

Bar Lorca, Bexley

What a load of old rubbish! Bar Lorca is an incredibly dull late night bar with well, not a lot to say for itself. Itís dark, miserable and lacking in anything like an atmosphere. If itís always like this, not a place Iíll ever be visiting again. I popped in with my girlfriend and her mate last Saturday (14th April) and knew immediately that if I was aware of anywhere better nearby, I wouldnít be in here. £3.20 is what you pay for Stella which is outrageous in itself. Yes, it was fairly busy, but one suspects that was because nowhere else in the near vicinity was still open. Avoid.

16 Apr 2007 19:13

Walkabout, Shaftesbury Avenue

To an extent, a Walkabout is, well, a Walkabout. They are those plastic ĎAustralianí themed bars which are seemingly scattered all over London and other parts of the UK. This one, in Shaftsbury Avenue, is no exception and I entered Saturday night (April 7th) with all the preconceptions that you might imagine a regular frequenter of these kind of bars to have. I personally do not have a problem with the Walkabout chain itself. I find them to be harmless and with the usual of mix of rock, pop, dance etc blaring, I find the music tolerable enough. The drinks (though be it, an uninspired selection) are reasonably priced and with all this in mind, everything seemed to be in place here on Saturday. The only Ďdifferentí and attention grabbing difference to this particular Walkabout is the slightly above average building it is housed in. At the end of the day though, if youíre a fan and havenít been here, then of course, you know what to expect. If youíre not a fan, donít bother. What youíll expect is pretty much what youíll get!

8 Apr 2007 23:56

The New Cross Turnpike, Welling

Although I have already submitted a review for this pub, (well, of sorts!) I would like to update my opinions after a visit with my girlfriend last Sunday afternoon (1st April). It was my first time in The New Cross Turnpike for probably near on a year and I would like to comment on what an excellent Wetherspoon it really is. Itís cleaner than any other branch Iíve been in, the food is better than any other Iíve been in and the staff (an opinion Iíve always had) are most efficient and friendly also. The beer patio is always seemingly well maintained (though I didnít venture there this time) and the newish refurb has made it a little more swish. Welling isnít renowned for top-class boozers and there is no getting away from the fact that this is till a chain pub, but its well worth a visit all the same.

PS: Iím aware my visit took place on a certain 1st day of the month, but this isnít a belated April foolís joke!

2 Apr 2007 21:31

The Duke of York, Victoria

Situated just opposite the main entrance/exit to Victoria train station, I found The Duke Of York to be a rather tiered, run-down and altogether, uninspiring place to have drink. I paid a visit after work last Friday evening (30th March) and whilst it obviously suits many, it just didn't quite work for me. With Fosters priced at an extortionate £2.91 (yes, that right, the beer I and many others like to dub Ďkangaroo pissí), I have to wonder why anyone bothers. If you can live without the background music, you may as well go to the perfectly adequate Wetherspoon (The Willow Walk) situated close by. Perhaps I am being a little unfair, this certainly is a terrible pub, itís just not a very good pub either.

2 Apr 2007 18:33

The New Moon, Welling

The New Moon and Sixpence closed sometime in 2004 and reopened the same year as Infernos. All the reviews on this page donít refer to its old guise (including by yours truly) and relate to its latest incarnation, but Infernos is now thankfully listed on its own.

20 Mar 2007 10:21

Infernos, Welling

Infernos used to be a great pub a couple of years back. It had a poor reputation, but was tidied up and given a new leash of life. The then manager (the first of two when I was a regular) managed to dispose of a large proportion of the then, troublesome locals, get some decent music in the jukebox and introduced live bands on a Sunday. He was mysteriously given his marching orders before the second manager was installed. The most part things remained how they were and the introduction of showing a film on a Thursday evening was a fine idea, but I think things slowly went downhill. He was gone by the end of 2005 I think and I ceased to be a regular around the same time. A third (this time female) manager then joined the scene and I really havenít been impressed on the few visits Iíve made over the past couple of years. It was good hereÖ for a while.

A final point Ė Infernos used to be called The New Moon and Sixpence and is still listed on this site in that name as well.

19 Mar 2007 16:51

The Southwark Tavern, London Bridge

I paid a visit to The Southwark Tavern when in the area with my girlfriend last Saturday (March 17th) and was admittedly, a little unsure as to what to expect from this seemingly lively pub on a Saturday night. Indeed, it was extremely busy, yet possible to find seats (well, stools) and I personally was comfortable enough. I found the music to be dull and repetitive however, but by partaking in good conversation, I managed to overlook this. The atmosphere was pleasant though. I canít report on the state of the interior too much due to the busyness, but can gladly report that there is a fine selection of lagers available. Budweiser Budvar, Heineken, Saropramen, Amstel (and there were others too) were all available on tap as well as pleasingly, an ale or two. I think this a decent enough place on its own and if excellent nearby pubs such as The Market Porter are just a little too packed, then unless you really are an ale buff, then I think here is more than okay as an alternative. Recommended.

19 Mar 2007 13:56

The Chamberlain Hotel, Aldgate

This is an excellent bar. I paid a visit with my girlfriend when in the area last Saturday (March 17th) and was most impressed. The interior was a little plain perhaps, but everything had sheen to it. The tables were clean, the bar area spotless and as for the toilets! I was half expecting the prices to be a little on the dear side, but was pleasantly surprised to discover that the Fullers beers were reasonably priced (£2.70 for London Pride) and best of all, the condition was glorious. I expect here gets rammed on a weekday evening, but if passing by at a quieter time, then I feel The Chamberlain Hotel, is simply a must visit.

19 Mar 2007 13:41

RSVP, Bexleyheath

Boxer, Ricky 'The Hitman' Hatton was in here last night (10th March) drinking a Coronna Extra with some mates. I suppose the place has something going for it then!

16 Mar 2007 16:53

Lloyds No. 1, Bexleyheath

I finally got round to visiting the recently refurbished and newly named Furze Wren lasts night (Feb 15th) and am pleased to report that it appears to have been a success. Its extremely quiet (seemingly at all times) and this certainly makes a change from how it used to be! The interior is neat, tidy and everything was impeccably clean, even the food tasted better than usual! Whether here can maintain the high standards once the smoking ban is fully enforced everywhere from July 1st weíll have to wait and see. In the meantime however, (if you can drink without the smoke!), Iíd recommend popping in.

16 Mar 2007 14:00

Britannia Bar Cafe, Rochester

A friend of mine occasionally drinks here in the Britannia Cafe Bar, so I thought I would check it out. I paid a visit today (12th March) and rather liked it. The interior has a warmth and glow to it and was neat and tidy. The staff were extremely accommodating and attentive also. The atmosphere was relaxed and top-notch too. I donít usually eat in pubs, but have to admit to liking the look of the grub being served up. The only downside was that it appeared nearly everyone was there to eat and I felt a little uncomfortable just sitting there with my paper. This would never be a major gripe though and can only recommend a stop here.

12 Mar 2007 15:01

City Wall Wine Bar, Rochester

This isnít really a wine bar at all, but more of a place for a pre-Aaron Stoneís piss-up (awful night club situated opposite). I was here in the City Wall Wine Bar with my girlfriend last night (2nd March) and actually found it to be okay. Indeed, the purple colour scheme is rather garish and the place is pretty tatty too, but the crowd were seemingly friendly enough and the music was easy on the ears. There is a definite lack of seating however, but we managed to grab a couple anyway. I can imagine it being dead in here during the week, but as stated above, a visit here is usually only for one reason. If thatís your bag, then here is recommended.

3 Mar 2007 14:17

The Spanish Galleon, Greenwich

A Sheperd Neame pub situated in the touristy part of Greenwich, The Spanish Galleon is a seemingly rough and ready establishment with tatty wooden floor boards, but actually does the job quite nicely. I walked in here with my girlfriend when last in the area (10th Feb), bur we couldnít get a seat and left, but didnít fail to pick up on the good atmosphere and 80ís music blaring. I recall being here once before and attempting (and failing!) to nick a Holsten Export pint glass! Recommended and Iíd certainly check it out again.

2 Mar 2007 16:47

The Alexandra Hotel, Chatham

The Alexandra Hotel is a Shepard Neame pub situated opposite the local railway station. I paid a lunch hour visit today (Jan 27th) and was impressed enough. The beer was served in top condition and the place had a light, airy and most relaxing feel to it. Seemingly, it has recently being refurbished and the interior was neat and tidy as a result. There is a small, cosy conservatory section for dining and a half-decent little beer patio for those summer months. Incidentally, the pub was in the local newspaper this week after winning Shepard Neameís Ďmost improved pub of the yearí award. I donít know if that means it wasnít so good before, but itís certainly worth a visit now. Recommended.

27 Feb 2007 17:58

The Courthouse, Dartford

My girlfriend has reported to me that there was a lot of commotion outside The Courthouse last night, (Feb 24th) which resulted in a chair getting smashed through one of the windows. This is most surprising as Iíve always thought here was a trouble free zone, hence the lack of bouncers etc. I can only presume that perhaps those who caused the trouble are un-desirables who usually frequent, but are now bared from nearby establishments such as The Litten Tree opposite or perhaps The Royal Bull And Victoria. I wonít be changing my rating as I feel that this is hopefully a one-off, but it is sad indication of the times nevertheless.

25 Feb 2007 13:44

Lloyds No. 1, Bexleyheath

As previously stated, Lloyds has been refurbished and given the new name, The Furze Wren. It is now decked out with leather sofas and it all looks rather fake to me. Hopefully there will be less trouble in the future, but itís still essentially the same place. The trouble aside, if you didnít like it before, the chances are you still wonít like it. Oh, and it has gone non-smoking. Although the ban doesnít start until July 1st, any newly opened or refurbished establishment in the chain will be so. It was quite empty because of it and RSVP next door (knowing that theyíll get a few more customers in the meantime) are seemingly taken full advantage of the remaining smoking months by hiking up the prices.

25 Feb 2007 13:07

The Dickens Inn, Tower Hill

A seemingly pleasant enough and interesting pub situated in St Katherineís Dock, The Dickens Inn dates back to the 18th century when it was in fact a spice warehouse. I paid an afternoon visit with my girlfriend last Saturday (10th Feb) and having being impressed after visiting here a few years back, was excited to be returning. Interior wise, the place is fine. Itís woody and has the traditionalist feel that I find appealing, yet it suffers elsewhere. It is indeed a tourist trap and this was most evident on my visit. That isnít a problem of course, but the prices were. A pint averages just over £3.00 here and heaven knows how much s bottle of wine will set you back! The food smelt good though and in all honestly, if you are looking for a place to just have a short wind down, then here will do fine. Donít have a session though. My wallet most certainly wouldnít appreciate it!

14 Feb 2007 18:39

The Crosse Keys, Bank

If ever there were a case point for the phrase looks can be deceiving being true, then The Crosse Keys in Bank is a prime example. There is no doubting whatsoever that this pub is housed in a most wonderful grand old building, where the sheer size of it is awe inspiring in its self, but this alone, isnít enough to make it a decent place. I paid a visit with my girlfriend when in the area last Saturday (10th Feb) and once Iíd settled down and gotten over both the splendid interior, I found the branch of the Wetherspoons chain to be most disappointing. It would guess that the pub was only a quarter full at most, but the staff were both morose and slow. The breakfast I ordered was of the poorest quality also, even by ĎSpoons standards! All in all it was a rather disappointing experience. You donít necessarily expect a lot from this chain, but maybe the grandeur of the building itself caused me to expect a little too much.

14 Feb 2007 18:25

King's Arms, Greenwich

A T&J Bernard offering, the Kings Arms in picturesque Greenwich is quite an excellent pub. I paid a visit last Saturday (10th Feb) and found it to be a warm, friendly and most pleasant experience. The staff were extremely attentive and efficient and unlike some London pubs, it was nice to see a smile. The beer was served in top condition on my visit and was far more reasonably priced than in some other establishments in the area. Recommended indeed.

14 Feb 2007 18:06

The Hufflers Arms, Dartford

The Hufflers Arms is very much a pub for the locals and is situated a short walk from the local train station. My recent visit (18th Dec) was actually my third and the place doesnít get any more comfortable whatsoever. Itís a very rough and ready establishment with grizzly faced regulars perched on bar side stools who like to stare. Even the staff seem standoffish. It doesnít appear to be an awful pub though and I have no such problems with places that cater primarily for nearby residents, but I have been in many others where new customers are treated as if theyíre not inhabitants from a different planet and I rally do not think this is much to expect. Oh well, Iíve given here as few chances now. Hufflers Arms, your time is up!

14 Feb 2007 17:11

Faces and Names, Manhattan

I visited here in September í02 with a few of my American buddies. Perhaps the thrill of being in the big apple may have clouded my judgment, but I honestly remember this being a pretty decent watering hole. The food was excellent (probably on par with the best Iíve tried in an English pub) and as with every other boozer I have visited in this land, the jukebox was extremely well stocked. Things may have gone down hill here of course, but if I were ever in Manhattan again, Iíd look no further. Itís as good a place as any to start. Recommended.

7 Feb 2007 22:54

The Wrong 'Un, Bexleyheath


I havenít ventured into The Wrong ĎUn in Bexleyheath for near on a year now, so cannot comment on changes since its gone non-smoking. However, I have found it to be a mixed bag on the visits I have made in the past. Interior wise, itís very drab and a little dingy. I recall it being a little dirty (though maybe that has improved of late) but of course, being a ĎSpoons, gets plus points for price and selection. The clientele have seemingly being of the usual mould for the chain and can add to the untidiness. This isnít one of the better establishments in the chain and the fairly nearby New Cross Turnpike (situated in Welling) is a much better, especially in the summer with its little beer patio.

6 Feb 2007 02:48

The Rose And Crown, Welling

I paid a visit to The Rose & Crown a few months ago (Nov 6th to be precise) and found it to be a scruffy, run-down and extremely tired looking pub, yet with a seemingly good community spirit. It was certainly friendly enough on my visit. I presume the owner or owners are hardened Millwall supporters as the pub is littered with framed shirts and photos. At £2.60 or thereabouts for a pint of Fosters, it could perhaps be a little cheaper, though judging by how busy it was on my midday visit, it obviously isnít too much of a deterrent to I presume, the pubs very loyal and local customer base. I doubt Iíll be making a return visit anytime soon, but I certainly wouldnít attempt to deter anyone from popping in for a swift one or even those looking for a place to make their new local. I liked it, in a way.

3 Feb 2007 14:52

The Crown and Thistle, Gravesend

The Crown & Thistle is an excellent back street style boozer situated a short walk from Gravesend high street. I paid an afternoon visit today (Jan 30th) and thoroughly enjoyed my time spent here. It is a small, narrow pub with a real glow and cosy feel to it. I sensed that itís very much a place for the localís pub but wasnít made to feel unwelcome and the overly curious golden retriever sniffing about only added to the pubs warmth and character. There is a nice beer patio at the back of pub which will no doubt come in handy when the smoking ban kicks in this summer. This is without a shadow of doubt, the best pub I have visited in the area. Highly recommended.

30 Jan 2007 17:42

The Stage Door, Victoria

I paid a visit to The Stage Door when in Victoria yesterday afternoon (Jan 19th) and thought the pub was okay enough without being spectacular. The place was clean, tidy and pleasant enough. My pint of Fosters was priced at the usual rate for the area, but was worryingly fizzy. This is perhaps a pub best suited for a quickie after work as I couldnít envisage myself spending a whole evening in here. It was okay enough, but couldnít put my finger on what it was lacking.

20 Jan 2007 02:21

The Bag O' Nails, Victoria

I paid a visit to The Bag ĎO Nails when in Victoria yesterday afternoon. (Jan 19th) I found it to be a most cosy pub little pub with a definite wooden feel. It was clean, tidy and well run by seemingly friendly bar staff. The background music was at a welcoming gentle volume and I overall I found my time spent in here to be most pleasant. There were a couple of members of the deaf community in jovial spirit on my visit so this is pleasingly a place that caters for all. It wasnít particularly cheap (£2.73 for Fosters) but one does get sick of cheap ĎSpoons after a while! Recommended.

20 Jan 2007 02:11

The Britannia, Gillingham

My previous review for this pub was taken off, presumably at the request by someone who works there or is perhaps a regular. The truth is, Iíve paid a visit here and simply didnít like it. The atmosphere and general feeling I had when in there genuinely did match what I had previously read on this page (reviews like mine, now deleted) and from what people have told me in person. I really do not feel that I offended anyone as such in my previous review and I most certainly didnít attack anyone personally. I posted what I thought was an honest account of my time in there. However, if this pub really has changed for the better, then good luck to it.

18 Jan 2007 19:35

The Call Boy, Gravesend

Not a place for a quiet pint, The Call Boy in Gravesend is a tatty Shepard Neame pub situated a short walk from the main high street. I paid a visit today (Jan 12th) and whilst I found it to be okay enough on the whole, I must admit to finding it a little uncomfortable. The few customers in there were a scruffy and rather vocal bunch and there were a couple of kids running around too. The piped in music was decent, yet it was a little loud and the place is in desperate need of a good clean. There are better pubs nearby and Iíd bypass here because of it.

12 Jan 2007 17:50

The Blue Rose, Sidcup

My girlfriend paid a visit here lat night (Jan 11th) with a friend and reported to me that the changes in this pub are quite dramatic in terms of the layout, dťcor etc since its change from a basic boozer to an Indian restaurant/bar, but trouble is most definitely still in the air. Apparently, a fight broke out between two blokes and one ended up on the floor being kicked in the head. The Indians in charge seemingly had no idea what to do and it was chaos. On the few visits I made here I found it to be okay (see my review further down), but itís obviously worsened! Iím interested to see how things have changed, but not to so sure if Iíll be checking it out anytime son.

11 Jan 2007 13:19

The Barrowboy and Banker, London Bridge

I havenít been to the Barrowboy & Banker for quite some time, but have been sufficiently impressed on the couple of visits I have made. The building is indeed rather grand and of course this pub is also usefully near the train and tube station. The downside is of course how busy it can get. My visits were after work and it was a struggle to get a seat. Itís been so bad in fact that Iíve walked out once or twice because of it. It does quiet down after a while though, so patience is perhaps an idea or getting there a little later. I canít remember too much regarding prices, but itís certainly a more tolerable option here than somewhere bland, like the All Bar One nearby. Recommended.

11 Jan 2007 11:12

Rising Sun, Dartford

As this is a Harvester restaurant, is it still known as The Rising Sun? Baring what this place exactly is now, does it even warrant a listing on this site? I donít mean to nit pick to much though as I did actually pay a visit here with girlfriend one time and remember thinking how much better it was than the other couple of restaurants in the chain I have visited in recent years. From what I vaguely recall, the place was seemingly well-run and was quite tidy and as is nearly always the case, my meal was tasty and good value for money, it just seemed that this particular establishment had a little extra going for it. Recommended if ever passing by and hungry.

10 Jan 2007 22:06

The Duke of Wellington, Crayford

I paid a visit a weekend visit to The Duke Of Wellington with my girlfriend a few months back just prior to going to the Crayford dog track round the corner. It was absolutely heaving on our visit and although we managed to get ourselves a seat, it really wasnít a comfortable atmosphere and I personally couldnít wait to bolt my drink down and leave. I recall the staff being efficient and friendly, but the fellow custom being a little on the ragged side. The music blaring was too loud and it appeared that karaoke would be starting shortly. The place was also a little tatty and a tad too dimly lit for my liking. All in all, here obviously suits some fine, but me personally? No.

10 Jan 2007 21:47

The Bunch of Grapes, London Bridge

Situated very near London Bridge station, The Bunch Of Grapes is a Youngís pub very much in keeping with others run by the brewery. I paid a visit last Saturday (6th Dec) and my time spent here was pleasurable enough. I liked the wooden feel and thought the lit candles on the tables made for an intimate and relaxed drinking experience. The selection and beer quality was good, but prices were a little dear and I did find the piped in music to be bland beyond belief. Get past these couple of niggles however and youíll find here to be a pretty overall decent venue for a drink or two to escape the hustle and bustle of busy old London. Recommended.

9 Jan 2007 17:36

The Old Ash Tree, Chatham

I frequent The Old Ash Tree every once in a while as it is probably the nearest half decent pub to where I live. It is part of the John Barras chain and as a result, lacks the individuality it may have once had, but I have always found the place to be pleasant enough. The regulars are seemingly friendly and the prices are reasonable. There is a decently stocked jukebox too, though the one quibble with this would be that volume is always a little low. To sum things up, itís a decent enough local and okay enough to eat a cheap meal or have a drink or two, nothing more though. This pub is also currently listed on the Gillingham section on this site. Chatham however, is its correct location.

31 Dec 2006 18:24

The Princess of Wales, Blackheath

I have not been to The Princess Of Wales in Blackheath for quite a while, but judging by some of the reviews below; it hasnít changed too much since I was last there. I actually rather liked it and on my few visits here, found it to be a friendly and relaxing drinking environment. I remember there been a nice conservatory for dining and although I never drank outside, I do recall a nice enough beer garden for the summer time too. However, I canít remember too much about prices or selection personally, though I donít remember it hurting my wallet too much. All in all, recommended.

30 Dec 2006 15:09

The Princess of Wales, Charing Cross

I popped in The Princess Of Wales prior to getting the train home on the 27th Dec. As started in an earlier review, it was indeed dimly lit and I must admit to finding it rather smoker and untidy in here too. It was fairly busy on my visit and a little uncomfortable because of it, but it seemed likely a friendly enough crowd. Prices were reasonable and overall, I found it to be acceptable enough in here. Itís just that I canít envisage myself paying a return visit anytime soon.

30 Dec 2006 11:37

The George, Temple

I paid a visit to The George when in the area on the 27th Dec. I found it to be a friendly, well run and relaxed place serving good beer at reasonable prices. The piped in music was pleasant and would definitely recommend here as being a decent enough place to whittle away a couple of hours

30 Dec 2006 11:27

International Cocktail, San Francisco

I canít believe this bar is on this site! I spent two weeks in the wonderful city of Sanfranciso in 2003 and practically lived in here. As I am the first reviewer and havenít been back since, I cannot comment on what it is currently like, but presuming things have not changed, itís a well run, friendly bar with a great atmosphere where everyone is welcomed with open arms. The jukebox was well stocked and I and my friends were always able to get a game of pool okay. There was live music on a couple of nights we were there and I was even allowed to pick up the guitar and strum a few chords. I donít think the yanks were too impressed though! Highly recommended.

25 Dec 2006 12:58

The Essex Serpent, Covent Garden

The Essex Serpent is a small traditional and cosy enough little pub situated right in the thick of the hustle and bustle which is known as Covent Garden. I paid a visit last summer and found the place to be fine. It was only mid afternoon, but in a popular area such as this one, youíd expect any pub to have at least a scattering of customers. It was a perhaps a little boring and I have to agree with a previous review about the bland music! I liked it enough however and wouldnít deter people from visiting, but there are better pubs of course.

25 Dec 2006 12:56

The Windmill, Dartford

The Windmill pub in Dartford is situated just away from the high street and is a small tatty old place serving, I presume, a very loyal but definitely local bunch of customers. I found it to be quite friendly on my visit yesterday (18th Dec) and certainly had no problems with paying £2.00 for my pint of Fosters, but as with the case with many other locals I have ventured in, I did feel a tad uncomfortable as an outsider. If you are new in the area or just looking for a pub to become a regular fixture at, then I think The Windmill is a decent enough place to make your home, otherwise, Iíd give it a miss.

19 Dec 2006 17:09

Crush Bar, Dartford

Not a place I regularly frequent, Crush Bar in Dartford is a quite a trendy place, perhaps a little out of sorts with its nearby neighbours. With cube style leather seating etc it actually comes across a little pompous to me. However, I actually found my time spent here yesterday (18th Dec) to be quite a relaxing experience and the few customers in there seemed friendly enough. By night it does become more of a clubby style establishment and on walking past havenít failed to notice the windows rattling and vibrating and the swarms of people inside. It looks a little claustrophobic for my liking at these times. I think itís an okay bar in all honesty, but if being crammed in like sardines on a weekend night isnít your thing, then you may very well want to bypass here at these times.

19 Dec 2006 17:04

RSVP, Bexleyheath

Sunday (10th Dec) was my visit to this bar since the switch from a Yatesís to its latest incarnation of RSVP. Prior to the change it was run-down, dull and on its last legs. The lick of paint applied and the dťcor touch up has worked well and one would suspect that itís given the place has a new lease of life entirely. Whilst Iím sure this is true, one does suspect that custom is still being lost to the ever popular Lloyds bar opposite and unless something major drastic is done or the latter closes, then whatever bar is here is always likely to be second best. It is very cheap however and the staff were friendly enough during the milk crisis that ensued after I ordered a coffee for my companion. All in all, its okay here, but Iím a regular at the bar opposite and despite the freshness of a newly done up bar, there isnít enough here to entice me to change custom again.

12 Dec 2006 18:59

The Railway Tavern, Higham

The Railway Tavern in Higham is a traditional Shepard Neame pub situated a stones throw from the local train station. It looks most enticing from the outside and the interior is indeed rather nice too. It appears to be well managed and the background music was pleasant also. Baring in mind the rural location (there isnít even a newsagents within a mile) itís a definitely a pub for the locals and this was fairly evident on my visit today (Dec 12th). They were seemingly friendly enough and once the staring games were over with the new customer (me), they settled and got on with their conversation. I liked it in here enough and if ever stranded in the area, would recommend a visit. There was another pub a little further ahead, but it appeared to be closed.

12 Dec 2006 18:43

The Swan and Mitre, Bromley

I paid a visit to The Swan And Mitre about four months ago after hearing that it had more of an alternative feel to the more modern bars in the area. I wasnít in here for too long, but in all honesty, I wasnít THAT impressed. My beer was served completely warm and I found the pub to be a little uncomfortable. Part of the reason I didnít stay long was because I just couldnít settle. It took an absolute age to get served too. Not bad, but I donít know if Iíd visit again when next in the area.

8 Dec 2006 18:11

The Botswain and Call, Chatham

The Boatswain and Call is a friendly enough, well run, neat and tidy regularís pub situated next to the local girls Grammar school. I paid a visit last night (5th Dec) and found it to be almost deserted. It was a little surprised, as the footy was on and they had a plasma screen. Not the most exciting pub in the world, but its okay in here all the same. 6/10.

6 Dec 2006 12:47

The Livingstone Arms, Gillingham

Rough and ready looking from the outside and even more so once entered. The Livingstone Arms is a pub I have bypassed for years, not thinking as to why Iíd ever pay a visit. However, yesterday (Nov 28th) was the day I decided to change all that. Itís defiantly a pub for the locals, but I was made to feel welcome and the footy shirt pinned to the ceiling is a great touch. The Gills memorabilia on the walls means itís proud to follow the local team and if the review below this one is correct, it could very well be well be the best pub for away supporters. The two German Shepardís behind the bar would see to any mischief!

29 Nov 2006 14:11

The Chimney Boy, Faversham

It may appear to be a lovely looking Shepard Neame pub from the outside, but The Chimney Boy is pretty bloody dark and miserable inside! I paid a visit yesterday (Nov 28th) and wasnít impressed at all. Why bother when there is a perfectly nice ĎSpoons just opposite? The barmaid was a sour and had the cheek to charge me £2.95 for a pint of Guinness. We are in Kent (not one of the most happening areas in the County either!) not Leicester Square.

29 Nov 2006 14:02

Leading Light, Faversham

Yesterday (Nov 28th) was my first ever visit to Faversham and the last place I expected to see amongst the cobbled streets, little shops and traditional pubs was a member of the Wetherspoons chain! Nevertheless, I decided to pop in The Leading Light and have to say that I think itís probably one of the best ĎSpoons I have ever been in. Itís smart, welcoming and light and airy. There was a scattering of the usual midday ĎSpoons brigade huddled amongst each other, but even they seemed to be a cut above the norm. These pubs are often off putting, but if ever passing through, I canít think of a reason not to visit. 7/10

29 Nov 2006 13:47

The Bear and Ragged Staff, Crayford

I popped in The Bear and Ragged Staff last Saturday (Nov 25th) before going for a meal with friends. From the outside the pub seems welcoming enough but appearances can of course be deceiving and thatís certainly the case here. Itís extremely scruffy inside and the atmosphere was distinctly off on my visit. I just found it impossible to settle and couldnít wait to leave. The prices and selection were fairly standard, yet I couldnít understand why they donít see wine in half measures. I was told they didnít have the correct glass size, but I most defiantly smell a rat. Not really recommended

27 Nov 2006 11:52

The Chandos, Trafalgar Square

I passed by The Chandos last Saturday night (19th Nov) and remembered that I actually paid a visit here around a year and a half a go. The beers are a little different, but good nevertheless and despite it being busy (a hazard of the area) it was comfortable. I canít remember the prices, but judging by reviews below, it seems to be fairly decent for the area. Iíll be paying another visit as soon as Iím next in the area. Recommended.

21 Nov 2006 17:34

The Rose And Crown, Dartford

Small, cheap and traditional is the best way to sum up the Rose and Crown. I paid a visit here yesterday (Nov 13th) and enjoyed my hour or so spent here. I found it to be both comfortable and relaxing and although a little off the beaten track, would definitely not be afraid to pay another visit if passing by again. Its one for the locals perhaps, but neverthelessÖ

14 Nov 2006 17:48

The Odd Fellows, Dartford

Trendy? Perhaps, yet The Odd fellows left a lot lacking for this reviewer. Donít get me wrong, it is comfortable enough here and I was okay with the err, modern dťcor, but I just found it all, wellÖ a little boring. The piped in music was decent enough and my time spent here certainly didnít make for an unpleasant experience, yet I failed to see what would possibly draw me here again in the future. Maybe it is decent enough for a mid-week catch up with friends or a swift one during the day, but I fail to see whoíd bother to visit this establishment on a weekend night, especially considering itís a little off the beaten track and other modernized pubs for the youngsters are plentiful in the town centre. Iím sure this pub has a loyal clientele made up of the nearby residents, but I donít think id bother to make the trip. All in all itís fine in here, but I was disappointed all the same.

14 Nov 2006 17:40

The Liberty Bounds, Tower Hill

One of my favourite ĎSpoons, I used to frequent The Liberty Bounds regularly when working nearby. Unlike many others in this hit and miss chain, it actually has the feel of a genuine pub and not a canteen or a doss house for down and outs. The clientele base here is less varied. This is very much down to its location and the pub is far the better for it. Like all Wetherspoons, in working areas, it can of course get a little rammed after 5pm, but overlook this and youíll find this watering hole to be a pretty relaxing drinking environment. Recommended.

14 Nov 2006 17:31

The Minories, Tower Hill

Not a place I have visited lately, but I used to frequent The Minories occasionally when working in the nearby area. It always felt incredibly gloomy and downtrodden and in all truthfulness, isnít my kind of venue at all and itís full of suited morons in a Friday night who canít handle their beer. If you have any understanding of what makes a decent pub/bar, do not be a fool like me and visit. Not recommended.

14 Nov 2006 17:24

Great Harry, Woolwich

Another town, another ĎSpoons. I paid a visit to this, the Woolwich branch of the popular chain yesterday (6th Nov) and found it to be quite okay. It was of course full of the usual alcoholics and work shy, just as all the others are during the day, but the place seemed to be friendly enough and well managed too. Iím not too familiar with other pubs in the area, so would probably pay another visit if ever here again. Recommended.

7 Nov 2006 18:07

O'Neills, Cannon Street

The Cannon Street branc of O'Neills is the smallest in the chain I have ever come across and also, I found it to be quite an uncomfortable experience on my visit a few months back. The pub is split into two even sections of smoking and non-smoking. The smoking area was hot, stuffy and I just found it very hard to relax. Pubs like this should be just either smoking or non-smoking. They are not big enough to have two separate areas of equal size and yes, I am aware of the smoking ban starting next year! Other than that, itís just a standard chain pub with half reasonable prices for the area.

2 Nov 2006 12:39

The Marquis of Granby, Fitzrovia

Whilst, undoubtedly The Marquis Of Granby has had some interesting characters pass through its doors in the distant past, I personally found it unbearable on my visit a few months back. The pub itself is small, wooden and on the whole, okay. Prices are dear but hey-ho, itís the area. In a way, the pubs fame is its own downfall. The place gets absolutely heaving inside and out; with suits and tourists everywhere. A small pub like this simply cannot handle the sheer volume of custom it attracts and I personally donít feel standing outside a pub or its next-door hairdressers makes for a particularly good drinking environment. You come to drink in the pub, not in the street, right? If you can avoid a visit after work hours and queuing an hour to get a drink, then itís probably okay in here at other times, but I personally canít be bothered to find out.

25 Oct 2006 14:00

Robert Pocock, Gravesend

Every town it seems has a Wetherpoonís and Gravesend is no exception. I paid a visit here today and whilst the nature of the chain tends to mean that all the pubs are fairly similar to an extent, its nice to come across those with a bit of personality. I found the Robert Pocock to be quite warm and cosy in a way and I enjoyed my hour or so in here. Itís certainly better than the Golden Lion in Rochester and The Paper Moon in Dartford. Iím sure it gets rammed between 5-7pm (as all ĎSpoons tend too) but itís worth a visit nevertheless.

24 Oct 2006 23:47

The Porterhouse, Covent Garden

I paid a visit to the Porter House last Saturday night (14th Oct) and found that overall; it was a decent enough place in some respects, yet it has one too many flaws. What I did like about here was the really interesting layout. There is only a ground floor and a basement; yet, there are so many hidden away cubbyholes. I was also impressed by the vast amount of different draught and bottled beers available. Prices were of course dear (£3+) per pint, yet this is Convent Garden on a Saturday night, so itís to be expected I suppose. Now, what I didnít like was the music. I couldnít believe how bland the piped in stuff was prior to the blander still (same old predictable cover versions performed without with zero aplomb), band coming on. The set up was strange too. Iíve never attempted to watch a band that is performing from behind the bar! The FINAL gripe I have concerns the basement area in general. Have the owners not heard of air conditioning? It was like a sauna in there and with the overcrowd ness and people trying to constantly push by you, it became more and more unbearable as the evening progressed. I had to go outside just to breathe! Now the rant is over, Iíll summarise by stating that this is by no means a dire place and undoubtedly some love it, but I wonít be rushing back.

17 Oct 2006 17:20

The Bricklayers Arms, Bexleyheath

Prior to last Fridays visit (13th Oct), my only previous time spent in The Bricklayers Arms was one Saturday afternoon a couple of years back. It was a scruffy old dump then and while the fairly recent refurbishment has been successful, the pub has seemingly retained the run-down feel of old. Despite this though, there is a definite warmness to this pub, which it distinctively lacked on my last visit. With both a Lloyds Bar and regular ĎSpoons nearby, this pub isnít the cheapest in the area (though it certainly isnít dear), yet if you prefer your fellow customers to be little more on the mature side and your drinking venue a little more traditional, then you could do worse than this old watering hole.

17 Oct 2006 16:59

The Iron Duke, Victoria station

I popped in here a couple of times when working in the area a few years back and my last visit was earlier this year. Unlike some other station pubs, at least The Iron Duke has a traditional feel to it and is fairly comfortable inside. However, that is where the positive differences end. Like many of the others, its prices border on the ridiculous. I seem to recall paying something ludicrous like £3.30 for a bottle of Grolsch. Its okay here, but with a cheap and cheerful ĎSpoons situated almost opposite, I donít know if youíd want to bother.

5 Oct 2006 16:05

The Lord Burleigh, Victoria

I popped in here for a quick one last night and oh my goodness, I donít think Iíve been in a proper old mans pub before, certainly not a London one. I actually quite liked the place. Its basic beyond belief (though there is a jukebox) and to suggest itís a little tatty in here, would be phrasing it mildly. Itís not a pub Id normally visit and Iím not going to pretend that Iíll be here again, but The Lord Burleigh has a certain charm to it. I didnít really notice how bad the toilets are, but can add that one of the regulars tried to sell me a Rolex. He was about 70!

30 Sep 2006 15:12

The Elusive Camel, Victoria

I paid a brief visit here last night (Sept 29th) and almost immediately after walking in, new I wouldnít be spotted here again. The beer is overpriced for the area and the place is full of those pretentious dick heads that pay for their drinks with their credit cards. The music was decent, but thatís never necessarily enough for me to think a pub is great or even slightly good. This monstrosity is neither.

30 Sep 2006 15:00

The Dog and Bone, Gillingham

I enjoyed my visit to The Dog And Bone last night. Itís defiantly a pub for the locals, yet I got chatting away to a few and they were most friendly and inviting. Itís a basic boozer, but there is a well-stocked jukebox and a pool table. The place is perhaps a little scruffy and rundown, but appearances can be deceiving. I donít know if Iíll ever be a regular, but I wouldnít be afraid to pay another visit.

30 Sep 2006 14:47

The Pembroke, Gravesend

A recent addition to Gravesend high street, The Pembroke, like The Tollgate in Dartford, is a part of the Smith and Jones chain. I paid a visit during the afternoon and found it to be pleasant enough. Iím under the impression that all these pubs have a very similar feel and The Pembroke is almost identical to its Dartford equivalent, only cleaner. I havenít been here in the evening, but can only presume the music volume goes up and the place gets packed with the local youngsters. If thatís not your scene, donít fear, as its quite okay in the afternoon.

24 Sep 2006 20:34

The Market Porter, Borough

This is a nice pub. Iíd naturally read about The Market Porter on this site, but until this morning, didnít realise Iíd been there! I paid a visit last night with my girlfriend and after a mad scramble to find some seats, we settled down for what was a very pleasant drinking experience. The interior itself is basic, but homely and despite it being busy, it was comfortable. Iím not really an ale man (though I am partial to the occasional drop of Speckled Hen) so I stuck to Fosters, which I suppose was priced at the normal rate for the area. All in all, I found the pub to be a delight of sorts and the staff were friendly too. Iíll be back.

21 Sep 2006 22:18

The Green Man, Soho

I popped in here for a quick pint during the day when I was in the area yesterday. The place was virtually empty so can't comment too much on what it gets like in the evening, but it was pleasant enough with nice back ground music. The place is split into two sections, one with wooden stools and the other with leather sofas. The Green Man has a nice layout. There is also a pool table at the back and there is the usual plasma screens showing Sky Sports, which almost compulsory in every pub Iíve been in. The beer was VERY cheap and if thirsty when I'm in the area again, I'll certainly pay another visit.

21 Sep 2006 13:54

The Hogshead, Leicester Square

Yesterday was my first visit to this pub since the name change. I liked it before, though it certainly wasnít anything wonderful. The refurbishment is very nice. The place has more of a modern feel to it and is pleasant enough. However, I paid £3.30 for a pint of Fosters, which I find absolutely disgusting. Leicester square the location may be, but there is need for it all the same. I think a pint of London Pride sets you back about £4! If you don't mind these sorts of prices, then I'd say this is a decent enough place to visit. For me though? No.

21 Sep 2006 13:37

All Bar One, London Bridge

I paid a visit to this All Bar 1 last night and what can I say? It's trendy, lacking in personality and full of those who go to the ďlavatories" instead of the toilets. The music was awful too. I was there with good company, so my pleasant evening was assured from the off set, but this place just didnít do it for me. However, at £2.65 for a pint of Carlsberg, I at least thought it was a little cheaper compared to other nearby pubs. I'll give it a 5.

21 Sep 2006 10:35

The Toby Carvery, Bexleyheath

The Toby Carvery in Bexleyheath is quite a decent restaurant/pub which I have visited a couple of times now. They serve up good honest grub at affordable prices. Itís a little tatty round the edges and the bar area leaves a little to be desired. Despite the good prices for the food (baring in mind that itís the primary reason youíd go here) the same unfortunately cannot be said for the drink. Unless you stick to the cheap larger, itís £3 a pint of Guinness and thatís a little dear even if drinking is perhaps secondary to the eating. There is a pleasant enough beer garden however and I have always enjoyed myself here. Overall, recommended.

14 Sep 2006 14:33

The Gipsy Moth, Greenwich

It may have the look of a traditional boozer from the outside, but The Gipsy Moth is anything but old fashioned inside. In fact, with the leather sofas and for the most part, DIRE background music, the place had more of a coffee shop feel to it. Quite ironic really, as there is a Starbucks next door! I had paid a visit once before, but left quickly as it was heaving and while it was packed on my visit yesterday, I did manage to grab a seat. It was god timing actually as the music picked up a little. (The Rolling Stones!) The beer garden out the back is nice, yet was busy and one felt like he was at a cattle market. All in all, itís a not a bad place by any means, it just didnít quite work for me. Oh, and someone should teach the bar staff how to pour a proper pint of Guinness!

11 Sep 2006 17:54

The Bell And Compass, Charing Cross

A bar I used to visit every now and again, but until a recent visit a couple of months back, itís not a place Iíve been too to often of late. Itís an okay bar on the whole, if a little trendy. The atmosphere always seems to be friendly and itís a decent enough venue to have a couple of drinks to start the night off. It is pricey of course, but aside from Wetherspoon type places, where isnít in the area? All in all, The Bell And Compass is worth a visit if passing by.

11 Sep 2006 17:40

The Nags Head, Welling

Not a pub I frequented much when living nearby, I did however pay a visit recently and while the overall atmosphere was okay for most of the night, a fight almost kicked off between two groups of guys and it made for an uneasy last pint. The place is decent enough on the whole and the jukebox is well stocked. The prices are cheap here and there is a mixed crowd, yet I canít imagine myself paying another visit when next in the area.

11 Sep 2006 17:34

The Golden Lion, Bexleyheath

I first paid a visit to The Golden Lion a couple of years ago and while I initially thought it was okay, if a little tatty, to be a tad off. My visit last Thursday (7th September) was an uncomfortable one. Admittedly, there was only a scattering of people there, but they were load, rude and rowdy and it made for an unsettling hour or so. The discount prices may be a plus point for this pub, but that isnít an incentive enough to get me in here again anytime soon.

11 Sep 2006 17:27

The Cricketers, Gillingham

Like the nearby Ash Tree pub, The Cricketers is also part of the John Barras group and like all chain pubs, the similarities are endless. This place has a somewhat cosier feel however and was pleasant enough on my visit today. Its situated next too a council estate and as a result, is one for the locals and I have noticed it to be rowdy on some nights as Iíve passed by, though Iíve never heard of any trouble as such and if passing by and need of refreshment, I could think of far worse places to go.

5 Sep 2006 18:11

Plough, Dartford

Although Iíve only paid the one visit, I feel qualified to review this pub as my opinion somewhat echoes those below. There isnít anything particularly wrong with The Plough; it just isnít particularly good either. Whilst not being tatty as such, the place has a run-down feel and I donít like the openness of the layout at all. The music blaring on my visit was welcome, but too loud and tinny and my beer was flat. No doubt Iíll find myself in here again one day, but I wonít be rushing back.

5 Sep 2006 18:04

Affinity, Bexleyheath

I am a little bemused as to why Affinity is listed on this site, as itís more of a club than a bar. I suppose the awfully decorated and tacky ground lever section could be described as the latter, but certainly not the basement. Admittedly, I had a good time on my visit, but that was down to the company, not the venue. The music was OK, but the place is a hellhole in other respects. The basement is far too small and hot and sweaty and the bottles of blue gunk I was drinking were warm. Not particularly recommended, though it was cheap.

25 Aug 2006 18:05

Yates's, Leicester Square

Iíve been here a couple of times, but not for a fair while now. It used to be a fairly trendy and extremely expensive place, which could get packed to the rafters on weekend nights. Judging by some of the reviews below, it hasnít changed much over the last year or so, but in all honesty, I only ever popped in for a couple before the cinema etc and if your going to use it for that purpose, I think itís okay enough. The pub next door is of course the cheaper option though.

25 Aug 2006 15:34

The Cabbage Patch, Twickenham

A pub Iíve visited a few times now over the years prior to gigs at the nearby rugby ground, Iíve always found The Cabbage Patch to be a pretty decent venue for a get together. The place does get pretty packed, yet despite this, the staff remain friendly and the service has been excellent on my visits and surprisingly, Iíve always just about managed to get a seat. There is actually quite a nice beer patio out the back for the summer too. The downside to this pub however would have to be the prices. Itís been £3 a pint of Fosters on my last two recent visits and your getting them in plastic glasses! All in all though, itís not a bad old place and I certainly have found it more tempting than the rather bland looking ĎSpoons pub a bit further back.

25 Aug 2006 15:13

The Star, Gillingham

The Star Pub in Gillingham is a mixed bag. I paid a visit today and I was pleasantly surprised. The bar staff were extremely friendly and the decent music playing made for a comfortable and dare I say it, relaxed atmosphere. The place does have a reputation however and I personally wouldnít recommend a visit on a weekend night. The place manages to conj our up a somewhat menacing atmosphere during this period and there is a definite air of intimidation. Iíll give it 5 out of 10 because itís more than okay in daylight.

24 Aug 2006 16:32

The Britannia, Monument

Like The Monument across the road, The Britannia is another pub I used to occasionally frequent when working in the area and like the other pub, it hasnít changed. The sometimes-enticing music you hear as you walk down into the entrance, unfortunately leads to a rather bland and soulless bar. Iíll give this pub a 5 because the isnít anything inherently wrong with it, itís just not particularly good either.

16 Aug 2006 22:31

The Stage Door, Dartford

Situated just off the main high street, The Stage Door is a run down, yet friendly enough locals pub with nice beer garden in the back. There are better pubs in the area, but if you wanted to avoid mayhem of Dartford on a Saturday night, this place will do nicely.

14 Aug 2006 22:17

The Monument, Monument

I used to drink in here occasionally when I used to work in the area and it was a Hogshead, but todayís visit was my first in a long time. Aside from a few minor changes (plasma screen on the wall), the interior hasnít changed a great deal. It still retains that wooden look and dull and bland feel of old. The staff are friendly, yet somewhat robotic and I got the untimely reminder of how dear it is in the area. To conclude, The Monument is a decent enough place for a drink or two after work, but really isnít a place to look out for otherwise.

14 Aug 2006 22:04

The Coal Hole, Strand

I used to pop in this pub with friends every now and again, but never really thought of it as anything other than one of those places you meet in, prior to heading off somewhere else shortly after. All, in all, the pub is fine for this purpose. It can get busy of course and as a result, getting a seat can sometimes be tough, but the staff have always seemed friendly enough and the service has always been fine on my visits. Itís not the greatest pub Iíve ever drunk in by any means, but neither is it the worst.

8 Aug 2006 17:43

The Malt Shovel, Dartford

Tucked away along a secluded side street up East Hill, Itís a surprise I even noticed this pub. The bar area is very small, but cosy and this leads through to a conservatory which acts as a dining area. Thereís quite a splendid beer garden at the back, which makes this pub ideal for a drink in those warm summer evenings. The overall atmosphere and feel of the pub was pleasant and the staff seemed friendly enough. The only real gripe I have with this watering hole is with the prices, £2.80 is a little steep for a pint of Fosters I think. Overall though, recommended.

8 Aug 2006 17:17

Golden Lion, Rochester

Situated at one end of the high street, The Golden Lion is a slightly scruffier than average, though be it, pleasant enough ĎSpoons for an afternoon drink or a bight to eat. It can however get rowdy in the evening and as suggested in the previous review, Iíd also recommend staying away on Friday or Saturday evenings. It gets EXTREEMLY packed.

31 Jul 2006 16:39

The Duchess Of Edinburgh, Welling

A large locals pub with a definite atmosphere, The Duchess Of Edinburgh is perhaps okay for a quick pint, but absolutely nothing else. I popped in here a couple of times when I briefly lived in the area and admittedly didnít witness any trouble, but Iíve heard a few stories, thatís for sure

24 Jul 2006 20:15

The Zero Bar, Bexleyheath

Being more of a traditionalist, I'm not really a fan of "trendy" style bars, but admittedly was impressed on my visit here. The interior and decor was as I expected it to be, however it was the draught beers from a microbrewery that impressed me. I tried a couple of the varieties on offer and both were excellent. The prices were also reasonable and was glad the music was at a reasonable volume. I like it load enough to be enjoyable, but not so booming that you struggle to hold a conversation. The bar didnít get too packed either which was a bonus for me, but was a little surprised at how quickly the place cleared as the evening progressed. All in all, Bar Zero is one of the BETTER music bars in Bexleyheath. Recommended.

24 Jul 2006 14:34

The Royal Oak, Dartford

I paid a visit to this pub based solely on the reviews Iíd read here and it didnít disappoint. Situated just a short way from the mayhem of the main high street, The Royal Oak not only has a warm and welcoming feel to it, but also, a plasma screen for sports, Oranjeboom on tap (a big plus for me!) and a lovely little beer garden at the rear. It all makes for the perfect drinking environment. I bypassed this pub for long enough. Make sure you donít.

21 Jul 2006 16:45

The Southern Belle, Gillingham

This pub has been renovated somewhat since the last couple of reviews. Itís now decked out with black leather sofas etc and everything has certain sheen to it. I popped in on an afternoon and the place was fine. However, baring in mind its high street location, I wouldnít like to say what it could be like on a Friday or Saturday night.

18 Jul 2006 18:23

The Plough and Harrow, Welling

The Plough & Harrow is an extremely run-down rough and ready regulars pub with a pool table and not a lot else. I've been in worse pubs, but this certainly isnít a place to look out for.

18 Jul 2006 13:42

Molly O'Grady's, Victoria Place

I used to go here occasionally when I worked in the area and I never had a problem with it. Its overpriced if I remember rightly, but found it to have a friendly enough atmosphere. In all honesty, the place is nondescript. Admittedly I have a soft spot for the place because I had some god laughs in here and it's like, if your in good company, what does it matter about the pub? However, not everyone has that viewpoint, so I'd have to say there are better pubs in the area, which would be more worthy of a visit. Molly O 'Gradyís is just average.

17 Jul 2006 11:37

Bitz and Pizza Sportz, Bluewater

Situated in the Bluewater shopping centre. This is a characterless and overpriced bar. Id recommend it perhaps for a drink or two after shopping, but other than that, I wouldnít say it's worth a visit.

17 Jul 2006 01:50

The Bulls Head, Strood

I visited this pub a number of times earlier this year and found it to be both friendly and welcoming. Itís interior may be shabby to the extreme and I wouldnít recommend a visit on a Friday or Saturday night, but itís well worth a visit on a Thursday evening for the quiz.

17 Jul 2006 01:24

The Beacon Court Tavern, Gillingham

Split into two sections, this would just be a fairly average local pub if it werenít for the fact that it doubles up as a fantastic live venue. I havenít ventured here in a while, but Iíve seen many a fine tribute band here and the atmosphere is nearly always friendly and welcoming. Recommended.

16 Jul 2006 23:41

The Railway Hotel, Dartford

Situated just opposite Dartford train station, this is a fairly run-down locals pub with a loud jukebox and a couple of pool tables. The prices are reasonable however and I'd recommend it as a meeting point or a drink before getting the train home.

16 Jul 2006 23:24

The Oast House, London Bridge Station

A slightly above average station pub with decent piped in music, The Oast House has a warm and welcoming feel and Id certainly recommend it as a meeting point or a drink before travelling home. The only downside is the lack of toilets.

16 Jul 2006 17:21

The Bridge Bar, London Bridge Station

Admittedly not a bar you'd visit unless passing through the station, The Bridge Bar is however clean, tidy and friendly. It's a little expensive of course, but I'd recommend it as a meeting point or a quick pint before getting your train home.

11 Jul 2006 21:05

The Two Brewers, Dartford

I've ventured in this pub a few times now and despite the gloom that prevails once you've entered, The Two Brewers is actually quite a cosy little pub. I'd recommended it enough for a drink or two during the week and with it being situated away from the mayhem of the high street, it could perhaps makes a half decent alternative on a Friday or Saturday night.

19 Jun 2006 23:59

The Walkabout, Embankment

I used to frequent this bar occasionally on Saturday nights and always enjoyed myself. The atmosphere was normally decent and the music nearly always good. However, the bouncers can be difficult, it can take an age to get served and when itís finally time to pay, you won't necessarily be too impressed with the prices. All in all, this place is okay. I have one or two niggles with it, but other than that, itís recommended.

13 Jun 2006 13:47

The Good Mixer, Camden

If youíre like me and passionate about rock 'n roll, then the chances are that The Good Mixer is automatically going to pick up plus points and your judgment may be somewhat cloudy. However, if you were to strip all that away or if you had no interest, just how good is this pub exactly? Well, it has a decent selection of drinks reasonably priced, the staff are friendly, thereís a good jukebox (naturally) and two pool tables. However, despite the pub being split into two sections, it still feels a little crammed in and I wasnít there when it wasnít busy, so heaven knows what it feels like when it's packed. The only REAL downside to this place though is the toilets. The stench is appalling. So, all in all, yes this place has some fantastic and interesting history to it, but at the end of the day it's just a fairly decent boozer, nothing more.

9 Jun 2006 14:32

The Hogshead, Sidcup

I don't particularly like this pub very much. Yes, it's bland and boring, but the main problem for me was that I found it to be a little too crammed in, so heaven knows what it feels like to be in here on a Friday or Saturday night. The food is okay though and reasonably priced.

6 Jun 2006 23:32

Sidcup Place, Sidcup

With nice surroundings, this is a decent place to visit in the summer for a drink or two in the sunshine, but as already stated, this pubs main purpose is to cater for those wanting a bite to eat.

6 Jun 2006 23:28

The Walkabout, Covent Garden

I've been in here a couple of times now, admittedly not on a Friday or Saturday night, but I've found it to be okay. Drinks were a little pricey, but they had Carlsberg on special offer at £1.45 and the staff seemed friendly enough. Football was on the big screen the last time I visited and although the place was heaving and a little uncomfortable, it made for a great atmosphere.

6 Jun 2006 17:37

Wetherspoons, Victoria Station

This is just your usual 'Spoons, except for the fact it's situated above a WHSmith in a train station. I suppose it's okay for a quick pint before you travel home, but there really isnít any other reason to visit aside from that.

6 Jun 2006 17:22

O'Neills, Bromley

OíNeilís in Bromley is just your standard large bar with music on a Friday and Saturday night. There is do differentiating between this place and anywhere else of the same calibre. I havenít set foot in here for quite some time, but remember it been incredibly packed with a lack of seating. I did go once or twice during the week and it was actually extremely quiet. Though in a pub with a large open space, it made it feel even emptier than it was. Itís an okay bar, but nothing more.

5 Jun 2006 23:56

The Guy Earl of Warwick, Welling

A little rough round the edges, not in terms of the dťcor, but perhaps the clientele. However, despite hearing a couple of stories, I found this pub to be friendly enough on my couple of visits. At the end of the day, this is just an average every day locals pub and unless you're already frequenting it, this really isn't a place to look out for.

2 Jun 2006 21:30

The Danson Stables, Danson Park

I don't think this pubs as bad as some are making out. I popped in a couple of times last summer and it didn't seem too bad. The food I ordered was fine and the atmosphere seemed friendly enough.

1 Jun 2006 00:34

The Prince Albert, Bexleyheath

This is a decent and quite bizarre little localís pub. As others have described, it has pots and pans hanging from the wall! The atmosphere is nearly always extremely warm and welcoming and with Oranjeboom on tap, it's nice to see a pub getting away from the usual Stella and Fosters set up. Recommended.

1 Jun 2006 00:18

Yates's, Lewisham

I've ventured in this pub a couple of times when passing through Lewisham. It seemed okay to me, though a bit too open spaced and I did detect a bit of an atmosphere. I'd be happy to drink here during the day, but not too sure about Friday or Saturday nights.

31 May 2006 23:54

The Moon Under Water, Leicester Square

Like all 'Spoons, it's cheap etc, though this place is unbearable on Friday or Saturday nights. If you ever go then, just make sure you prop yourself up at the bar sharpish, or you'll spend an absolute age waiting to get served. For such a busy area, if there really HAS to be a Wetherspoons at all, they should at least make it a little larger. It can get far too hot and almost claustrophobic at times.

31 May 2006 21:29

Ice Wharf, Camden

For those who are unaware, Lloyds bars are Wetherspoons, though slightly trendier and with music. I've only been in this one a few times, but aside from the overcrowding, it isnít too bad and seems fairly clean in comparison to others.

31 May 2006 20:07

The Worlds End, Camden

I really like this pub. Situated just round the corner from Camden Town tube station, this watering hole is split into two sections. One is extremely ramshackle and just seems like any other smoky little pub; where as the other part is a big wooden open area with a large bar in the middle. There isnít much going on during the day, but it does get packed on Friday nights and the music is wonderful. If rock 'n' roll is your thing and youíre ever in the area on Friday or Saturday night, check this place out.

31 May 2006 19:58

Boadicea, Charing Cross Station

I've popped in a few times, mainly when waiting to meet people before we go elsewhere. It's your typical station pub, overpriced, too small, etc. Though, at least it has fairly decent music most of the time.

31 May 2006 19:52

The Mash Tun, Victoria Station

I've ventured in here once or twice while waiting for my train to arrive. It's just your average station pub and hence, overpriced.

31 May 2006 19:49

St. George's Tavern, Victoria

I used to regularly get drunk in this pub when I worked in the area. It's not a bad place by any means, just a bit dull. It's reasonably priced for central London and has a friendly atmosphere most of the time.

31 May 2006 19:46

Willow Walk, Victoria

I used to frequent this pub regularly when I used to work in the area, but aside from the laughs I used to have here with work mates, it's just your bog standard, no thrills 'Spoons at the end of the day. If you've been to one, you've been to them all.

31 May 2006 19:42

The Wat Tyler, Dartford

I visited this pub a couple of times after I first moved to Dartford and found it to be okay. Yes, it's dark and a little dirty, but found the atmosphere to be both friendly and welcoming. With so many sterile chain pubs here and in the surrounding areas, itís nice to come across little locals like this with a bit of personality.

29 May 2006 23:15

The Coopers Arms, Rochester

After ignoring it for such a long time, I paid a couple of visits to this pub last year. You could hardly describe it as lively, but I remember it having a very warm and welcoming atmosphere. Itís one to visit on a weeknight or a Sunday afternoon.

29 May 2006 22:42

Trafalgar Tavern, Greenwich

I've been this pub a few times and yes, while the view of the Thames from the window is great, the prices are not. I was served a pint of FLAT Stella in a Guinness glass. That sums the place up for me. It's extremely packed most of the time too, but thatís because of the location, not the greatness of the pub.

29 May 2006 22:20

The Gate Clock, Greenwich

Like with all 'Spoons, The Gate Clock boasts great prices and selection, yet, aside from the nice location, thatís all this pub has going for it. It's okay during a weekday evening, but gets far too packed at weekends.

29 May 2006 22:14

The Rising Sun, Eltham

I like this pub. I haven't paid a visit in quite a while, but I liked its interesting layout and compared to other local's, it's always seemed to be extremely friendly. Recommended.

26 May 2006 23:48

The Crown, Eltham

Most of the time, I'd of thought this pub is all right for a visit. I used to go here on Sunday evenings occasionally and it was okay, but it certainly isn't on Friday and Saturday nights. At first it just seems like a bit of a party with the locals getting involved with Karaoke and having a little dance, but the longer you stay, the drunker everyone gets and ultimately nasty. Pop in, just not on the days Iíve specified. They're for "locals" only

26 May 2006 23:44

Eltham GPO, Eltham

I've been in this pub twice and both times I witnessed a mass brawl! This pub obviously attracts Elthams finest. If you like violence, intimidation and been offered coke in the toilets, this is the pub for you. Avoid at all costs.

26 May 2006 23:34

Sky, Bromley

Oh my goodness! What an awful place. Admittedly, I've never been here on a weekday evening, when maybe itís a little friendlier, but it's an absolute hellhole at weekends. I found the music to be terrible and most of the clientele to be undesirable.

26 May 2006 22:29

TP's, Bromley

I used to go here quite a bit, but havenít visited for quite a while now. The prices are okay, it's always a laugh when your there with mates etc. The music is okay and the bands are okay after you've had "a few". However, I've witnessed a couple of fights in the past and got sneered at and started once for absolutely no good reason whatsoever. Still, despite these flaws, I've always enjoyed myself here.

26 May 2006 22:25

Paper Moon, Dartford

To me, all Wetherspoons are the similar. They're all cheap and they're all lacking in atmosphere, but all offer half decent grub at an affordable price. This 'Spoons is no exception, yet it's probably one of the scruffiest and filthiest ones I've been in.

26 May 2006 22:08

The Courthouse, Dartford

I've popped in here a couple of times recently and have to admit that I rather like it. As others have pointed out, it's a little different to the surrounding boozers and all the better for it. I've enjoyed the live music I've witnessed and I liked the pleasant friendly atmosphere. A recommended alternative.

26 May 2006 22:01

The Bell, Bredhurst

I used to go here on Friday evening now and again. Aside from the overcrowding, I do recall this place having music, though I could never hear it over the crowds. Despite these gripes, I always found the place to be quite welcoming and friendly. Recommended, though maybe not at weekends.

26 May 2006 20:37

The Rose, Bexleyheath

I've only popped in here a couple of times. Once on a weekday afternoon and the second time on a Sunday evening. I can't remember too much about the drink selection or prices, but specifically recall the place having a friendly atmosphere and a cosy feel to it. I wouldnít personally choose to spend my Friday or Saturday nights here, but itís nice little pub all the same.

26 May 2006 20:31

The Rat and Parrot, Bexleyheath

I never fail to enjoy myself in The Rat And Parrot. I don't know if Iíd choose to come here on any night, other then those specified below, but that's purely a musical issue. The drinks are reasonably priced and this place is a must on Wednesdays for the indie night. The music is loud and good and I've never witnessed any real trouble. I havenít been for many months, but I recall it being great here on Sunday evenings too.

26 May 2006 20:24

Lloyds No. 1, Bexleyheath

I don't mind bar this bar at al. For those wjo are unfamiliar with Lylods bars, they're part of the Wetherspoons chain, but with added music. So, the drink selection is fairly good and cheap. The place can get a little too packed and rowdy at weekends, but have'nt witnessed any trouble and I always have a laugh here.

26 May 2006 20:18

The New Cross Turnpike, Welling

Well, it's a Wetherspoons; so don't expect music or a buzzing atmosphere. On the other hand, like all 'spoons, it's cheap and a decent place to visit for a drink or two on weeknights.

26 May 2006 20:10

The Prince of Wales, Chatham

After ignoring it for a long time, I've started to pop in this pub every now and again. The drink is reasonably priced and there always seems to be a fairly friendly atmosphere. I don't know if Iíd want to spend my Friday or Saturday evenings in here, but it's quite nice for an afternoon or midweek drink.

26 May 2006 19:54

Old Post Office, Chatham

Never been here during the day or on weekday evenings, but go occasionally on Saturday nights. In all truthfulness, I can't see anything wrong with it. The bouncers seem okay; the drink is reasonably priced and I havenít witnessed any trouble. The music isnít too good though and is a too loud. There is a dance floor of sorts, but thereís no need to go into that.

26 May 2006 19:47

The Tollgate, Dartford

I used to frequent this place a lot after I initially moved to Dartford. The drink selection and prices arenít noticeably bad and the staff are freindly-ish most of the time. The place seems a little untidy though and this place isn't really my thing on Friday and Saturday nights. It gets a little too rowdy and overcrowded for my liking. The musicís not to bad though and there are worse places you could go.

26 May 2006 19:38

The Royal Victoria and Bull, Dartford

I've been here several times. Admittedly, never on a weeknight or during the day, but I'd recommend to stay away on Friday or Saturday nights. It seems aggressive, though like one or two others have said, it's interesting with all the little cubbyholes and such. It's not bad, but there are other places I'd much rather frequent.

26 May 2006 19:33

The Litten Tree, Dartford

I don't mind the Litten Tree at all. It's spacious, with a good selection of drinks, though with the exception of the "special offers", is dear and is fairly quiet during the day. Whether clientele over a certain age would rate it highly on a Friday or Saturday night, is a however, a different matter. The door staff seem friendly and I havenít personally witnessed any trouble. The music could be better though. If you like your rock 'n' roll, don't go!

26 May 2006 19:27

The Ship, Gillingham

As previously stated in another review. This pubs an "interesting place", though nothing else.

I've only been here once or twice and have no real desire to return. It all seemed a bit cramped, again, as stated in another review. I think the drink was a little pricey too.

26 May 2006 19:18

The Old Ash Tree, Chatham

I frequent this pub occasionally and I have to say, it's not too bad. The drinks are reasonably priced and there never seems to be any trouble. The downside is that it's a bit boring and the music on the jukebox never seems to be loud enough. It's one of those pubs, which is okay for a midweek drink, but you wouldnít necessarily want to spend your Friday and Saturday evenings there.

26 May 2006 19:13

The Wrong 'Un, Bexleyheath

I went past this pub on the bus the other day and I noticed it's now non-smoking. I know every pub will be from next summer, but this is the final nail in the coffin of what was already, not very good pub.

16 May 2006 00:29

The New Moon, Welling

Oh dear. I popped in Infernos last Saturday night, only to be confronted by the burley bouncer and abruptly warned to take of my "hoodie" before going any further.

This was my first visit in some time. I went with my girlfriend and after reading here that it's changed management, I just wanted to see the changes and oh, what changes! The good jukebox has gone, along with all the decent CD's and has now been replaced with one of those modern touch-screen devices, with crap music to boot. The clientele seems to have gotten worse and the DJ was playing drum 'n' bass. At least in the past they've tried having live bands etc, but with this turn in direction, I most certainly won't be going again. There was a horrible menacing atmosphere too and well, where as I thought this was a half decent boozer, I've changed my mind.

Thank you Infernos. I had some great laughs in here last year, shame I won't be doing the same in '06!

25 Apr 2006 02:19

The Nags Head, Rochester

I've been going to the Nags Head on and off for what seem like years now.

It's a very scruffy and run-down pub, yet the good service and atmosphere makes up for this. The jukebox is indeed excellent.

Overall, it's a decent little pub, with the decor and shabbiness it's only downfall. Things like that have never particularly bothered me, so I'm more than happy in here.

Highly recommended

22 Mar 2006 14:07

The Tap 'n' Tin, Chatham

Ah, The Tap 'n' Tin. I started frequenting this place "bunking off" while in the 6th-form at school. Admittedly, all the appeal of the place back then was based purely on the fact that I wasnít supposed to be there. It was probably a couple of years after I finished school 'till I started going back on a regular basis.

Now, lets start with the good points. THE MUSIC. To my knowledge, this is still the only pub in the Medway Towns that properly caters for those with a passion for rock 'n' roll. The jukebox is crammed with classic albums and when thereís DJ's, the only ever spin great records. For the music, this place is sublime.

Now for the bad points. The prices are disgusting. I CAN understand the logic behind charging an entry fee on Friday and Saturday nights, but considering that many of the regulars are students, I really think they 'ought to look at the prices they're charging for alcohol. Also, the glasses often look like they need a clean, the beer on tap is always flat and the bottles in the chillier are always warm.

So there you go. It's a tough one with this pub. While it's great for the entertainment, the place BADLY falls short on the fundamental basics a pub needs to be classed as a good watering hole. The Tap 'n' Tin fails miserably here. OKAY, it's a fairly friendly atmosphere in comparison to other Chatham pubs, but I could imagine some getting irate with this pubs pitfalls.

If they got all the above sorted and maybe cleaned the place up a little, it'd be an A grade boozer. Until then, I'll give it a 6.

22 Mar 2006 12:05

The Blue Rose, Sidcup

Not residing in Sidcup, this was never going to be a local, but nevertheless, I've paid a visit or two.

The pub is split into two sections. A quiet one without the obligatory jukebox, pool table etc and another smaller section, with all these things. I remember them having a fantastic jukebox, but in all honesty, not a lot else. The pub was only ever half full when I was there and while that suites you at times, sometimes everyone likes a bit of an atmosphere.

If I remember rightly, the beer is a little pricey, but they had Budweiser. Whether you like the lager or not, thatís rare and reckon the pub deserves an extra point for that.

All in all, The Blue Rose isn't a bad pub; it's just not a great one either.

22 Mar 2006 11:34

The New Moon, Welling

Although I'd visited a few times in 2004, I didnít really become a regular at Infernos until last year.

I usually popped in, on days off from work, during the 4-5pm period, when Fosters was £1.45 a pint. I'd only heard bad things about this pub, but it suited me fine and with few clientele at time, I found I could have a drink in peace. I used to meet my girlfriend in there, but she despised it. She hated the run-down decor and for the life of her, couldnít understand the attraction. MAYBE the attraction for me was that the other pubs are so dire. At least they had a decent jukebox here and well, like I stated earlier, I just felt comfortable.

We'd occasionally go there in the evening and while it was okay, the pub defiantly changed once the Sun had gone down. As you'd fully expect, it was busier, but that wasnít the problem. To me, there seemed to be an air of menace. It always felt like something could kick off and I found that off putting. The Irish manager (why did he leave? Was it because business was slow?) was cool and very friendly. I don't know if he was responsible for introducing the live acts on Sundays, but it was a great idea. I wasnít too keen on the bands, but it was always a friendly atmosphere amongst the student types.

I left the area late last year and have only ventured back once. As others have commented, there seems to be a new manager, the third since I started going! I only stayed for a bit, but the place just didn't seem right. Maybe it had lost its familiarity to me. The bar staff had changed and RnB was playing on the jukebox.

Would anyone care to comment on what it's like on Sundays now? Do they still have live music?

22 Mar 2006 11:22

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